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2017 Tremaine Medal and Watters-Morley Prize Awarded

The members of the Awards Committee are very pleased to announce that Anne Dondertman will be the recipient of the Marie Tremaine Medal and Watters-Morley Prize for 2017. The Medal will be awarded at the Society’s 72nd Annual General Meeting.

Anne Dondertman is a rare book librarian, bibliographer, and life-long advocate for the development of special collections. Her commitment to special collections for research in both the library and academic setting established her as one of Canada’s leaders in bibliography, book history, and print culture. Anne Dondertman dedicated her entire professional life to rare books and special collections, eventually rising to what many consider the top position in the profession within Canada: Director of the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library. Her stewardship of the Fisher Library has left an enduring legacy at the library and beyond. Outside of the Fisher, Anne has contributed to Canadian bibliographical research in other crucial areas. She has served many different roles within the Bibliographical Society of Canada, including Secretary (1991-98), President (2008-11) and Past President (2011-14), along with contributing articles and reviews to Papers/Cahiers. Up until her recent retirement in the summer of 2016, she remained steadfastly dedicated to the library, including the mentoring and development of numerous special collection librarians that will shape the future of special collections librarianship in Canada. In essence, there has been no better advocate for special collections libraries and their role in the study of book history and bibliography than Anne Dondertman.

We are delighted to offer this recognition of Anne Dondertman’s impressive contributions to advancing Canadian bibliographical scholarship.

Congratulating the BSC-SbC Emerging Scholar 2017

The Bibliographical Society of Canada (BSC) is pleased to announce that Adrien Rannaud, a postdoctoral researcher at the Université de Sherbrooke, has been selected as the recipient of the Emerging Scholar Prize. His paper, “‘Diriger un magazine féminin dans les années 1950: La Revue moderne, creuset de la littérature en régime médiatique,” will be presented at the BSC's annual conference in May 2017. Dr. Rannaud’s timely and original paper focuses on the actors of the Canadian periodical La Revue modern during the 1950s, particularly their trajectories in the literary and media fields, and their impact on the poetics of the magazine. A revised, article-length version of the paper will be published in the Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada, subject to peer review. The prize also includes a grant of $500.

The Emerging Scholar Prize was established by the BSC in 2012 to support a scholar at the beginning of her or his career who is undertaking research in bibliography, book history, or print culture broadly defined, including the study of the creation, production, publication, distribution, and uses of manuscripts, printed books, or electronic texts.

Call for papers

Annual Meeting of the Bibliographical Society of Canada
Book Historical & Bibliographical Praxis in Canada

Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences
29 May 2017 - Ryerson University

In 2017, the annual meeting of the BSC-SbC will take the form of a one-day conference, to be held in tandem with a separate joint day organized with the Canadian Association for the Study of Book Culture (CASBC) on 30 May 2017 (for more information on that event, see below). The BSC-SbC hopes to encourage students, researchers, teachers, and professionals engaged with book history and bibliography in Canada to reflect on the foci, aims, methodologies, and practices of these two related disciplines. Potential areas of interest and questions for discussion include:

Canadian Perspectives on Teaching Bibliography and the History of the Book
  • What roles do librarians, archivists, professors, and teachers play in the pedagogy and outreach of the discipline(s) in Canada?
  • What is the current status and future of key Canadian programs in book history and print culture (e.g. Simon Fraser, Sherbrooke, Toronto)?
Cultural Heritage and the History of the Book and Texts
  • How have Canadian libraries, archives, museums, and allied cultural heritage institutions endeavored, often in the face of adversity, to preserve and protect multiple legacies?
  • What is the role of bibliography in preservation and legacy-building?
  • What critical contributions do book historians and bibliographers make to research on controversial chapters of Canada’s past?
Expanding the Scope of the History of the Book and Print in Canada
  • How do we address the histories, past and current, of diverse communities of readers, writers, printers, and publishers?
  • In what ways can we collaborate more fully with related academic disciplines, including sociology, journalism, editing, computer science, history, digital humanities, and others?
  • How can we engage more with our sister societies in book history and bibliography in Canada and abroad?

Scholars, students, and professionals interested in presenting on these or related topics in the form of a 20 minute paper may submit a proposal (500 words) and a one-page CV in French or English to no later than 15 January 2017. Those invited to present at the BSC-SbC conference must also register for Congress. They will also be able to take part in the joint day organized with CASBC, on 30 May 2017.

Call for papers

Reading, Writing, Printing & Publishing in Canada since Confederation

A one-day scholarly event co-organized by The Bibliographical Society of Canada & The Canadian Association for the Study of Book Culture

Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences
30 May 2017 - Ryerson University

Program Chairs: Ruth-Ellen St. Onge, Janet Friskney & Myra Tawfik

In recognition of Canada’s sesquicentennial in 2017, the Bibliographical Society of Canada (BSC-SbC) and The Canadian Association for the Study of Book Culture (CASBC-ACÉHL) are collaborating on a joint day to be held at Congress 2017 in Toronto. In keeping with Congress’s overarching theme of “The Next 150: Far and Wide,” we invite paper and/or panel proposals related to the broad topic of reading, writing, printing & publishing in Canada since 1867. We hope to inspire presenters and participants to consider questions that include, but are not necessarily limited to, the following:

  • How has Canada’s unique history—informed by two official languages, the forces of colonialism, imperialism, and the looming presence of our neighbours to the south—shaped domestic print production and distribution from 1867 to the present day, or, in turn, been shaped by it?
  • How have printers, publishers, literary institutions, authors, and readers emerged within, influenced, and reacted to the Canadian context since 1867? What challenges did they face as they created, facilitated, nurtured, and responded to written works authored and/or published in Canada? What challenges do they continue to face?
  • What histories of print and of the book—reflecting the multiplicity of ethnic, religious, racial, linguistic, regional, and cultural communities of Canada—have yet to be revealed, studied, or celebrated?
We encourage proposals that explore these questions, or any other aspect of Canada as a place, nation, culture, and society, that has inspired the creation, production, dissemination or reception of published works in any genre or form since 1867.


  • Please submit a one page proposal and a brief biography in English or in French [including your full name, professional designation, institutional affiliation or place] no later than 15 December 2016 to
  • Papers presented on the joint day should be no more than 20 minutes in length.
  • Separate CFPs will be launched for the BSC-SbC and CASBC-ACÉHL’s annual general meetings, occurring respectively on 29 May and 31 May 2017. Please indicate to the Program Chairs if you are submitting a proposal to the joint day as well as the separate annual meetings.
  • Our ambition is to produce a special theme issue of the Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada containing a selection of article-length versions of the papers presented at this jointly-organized event. If you are interested in expanding your conference paper to article-length (approximately 25 double-spaced pages inclusive of notes) for submission to the special issue, please indicate that clearly in your initial proposal. The deadline for submission of articles to the PBSC will be 15 July 2017. Please see the journal web site for guidelines in preparing your submission at
  • Participants invited to present papers must register for either the BSC-SbC or the CASBC-ACÉHL conference.

  • 2017 Emerging Scholar Prize - Invitation

    The Bibliographical Society of Canada (BSC) invites applications for the Emerging Scholar Prize. The Prize promotes the work of a researcher who is beginning his or her career in the fields of book history and bibliography broadly defined, including the study of the creation, production, publication, distribution, transmission, history, and uses of printed books, manuscripts, or electronic texts. Preference will be given to topics with a Canadian dimension.

    The recipient of the BSC Emerging Scholar Prize will be invited to deliver a paper at the Society's annual conference. A revised, article-length version of the paper will be published in The Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada / Cahiers de la Société bibliographique du Canada, subject to peer review. A grant of $500 accompanies the Prize and may be used to help the recipient attend the annual conference or to meet costs associated with research. The recipient will also receive a one-year complimentary membership in the BSC.

    Students of any nationality enrolled in a master's or doctoral program (e.g., MA, PhD, MLIS) are eligible, as is anyone who has completed such a program within the last two years from date of convocation. Individuals holding tenure track/continuing appointments are ineligible, as are members of the BSC Award Committee, BSC Fellowship Committee, and the BSC Council. There are no restrictions regarding the topic of research so long as it relates to some aspect of bibliography or book history.

    Applicants must submit the following documents electronically in English or in French, in a single PDF file in the following order:

    • A one-page cover letter that explains the applicant's interest in and suitability for the prize;
    • A brief CV (max. three pages);
    • An abstract (max. 750 words, incl. bibliography) of the proposed paper;
    • Proof of student status or of graduation within the past two years (copy of diploma, copy of student identification, or official or unofficial transcript).

    As well, one confidential letter of reference should be emailed directly by the referee. The letter may be sent as text or an attachment, but it must include the referee’s contact information and any institutional affiliation.

    All application materials, including letters of reference, should be sent to Chris Young, Chair, BSC Awards Committee,,, by December 9, 2016. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Paper submissions will not be accepted. The recipient will be announced in February 2017.

    Additional information about the award and the BSC can be found at:

    2016 Tremaine Fellowship Awarded

    The BSC-SBC Fellowships Committee has awarded Ruth Bradley-St-Cyr the 2016 Tremaine Fellowship. Bradely-St-Cyr’s proposed project The Legacy of the Ryerson Press is an expansion of her PhD dissertation, which explored the last ten years of Ryerson Press from 1960 until it was sold in 1970. In the words of a referee, “The whole [PhD] made a significant contribution to scholarship on the history of the Press in particular and of Canadian literary publishing in general. The methodology involved close attention to archival materials, particularly to relevant files in the United Church of Canada Archives and to the papers of individuals involved with Ryerson Press. Interviews with former editors and employees of the Press also provided crucial primary material. Judicious in its analysis and arguments, the thesis made a solid case throughout.”

    The Tremaine Fellowship supported project will answer the question, what is the legacy of the controversial 1970 sale of The Ryerson Press for Canadian publishing? Dr. Bradely-St-Cyr proposes to expand her study of Ryerson Press to include research of royal commission fonds and to conduct interviews with selected publishers and writers active in the 1960s and 1970s. A special effort will be made to interview those who testified before the royal commission. The documentation and views gathered will enable Dr. Bradely-St. Cyr to offer an evaluation of the changes in cultural policy that followed the sale, and the consequences of the policy changes, then and now, for the Canadian publishing industry.

    As another of her references wrote, “the sale of The Ryerson Press and its aftermath was a watershed period for the Canadian book industry, one which greatly deserves more research and analysis as Canadian publishing faces on-going challenges. Dr. Bradley-St-Cyr is superbly equipped to write a book on the topic on the legacy of the Ryerson Press sale, having successfully completed a doctoral thesis at the University of Ottawa which examines the last decade of the Press, the conditions which led to its sale, and the controversy, studies and attempts at redress which followed.”

    The Fellowships Committee concludes that Dr. Bradley-St-Cyr’s thorough knowledge of the subject is clear, and her proposed combined methodology of archival research and oral history work will ensure that her research will bring new insights into this moment in Canadian publishing and culture.

    The Tremaine Fellowship is offered in memory and through the generosity of Marie Tremaine (1902-1984), the doyenne of Canadian bibliographers. The Fellowship was instituted in 1987 and is offered annually to support the work of a scholar engaged in some area of bibliographical research, including textual studies and publishing history and with a particular emphasis on Canada. The Fellowship is open only to members of the Bibliographical Society of Canada (

    Call for Papers

    Gatherings: Communities of Print and the Book
    Annual Meeting of the Bibliographical Society of Canada
    30-31 May 2016
    Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences
    University of Calgary

    In May 2016, the Bibliographical Society of Canada invites scholars to shift their communities of readers, communities of writers, communities of the book and of print. Organizers invite paper proposals linked to the following topics or any area broadly related to the conference theme. perspective from the national and global scale and to consider the printed word, the book, and texts on the micro-scale of the community. In tandem with the general Congress theme of “Energizing Communities,” the BSC-SbC will showcase papers by scholars examining:

    • Local and regional printers and publishers and their networks
    • The local and regional press: newspapers, newsletters, periodicals, almanacs
    • Print and online publications and ephemera of counter-culture, grassroots and activist movements
    • Authors and illustrators and their engagement with local and regional communities
    • Rural and urban public libraries
    • Microhistories of reading
    • The Canadian small press scene
    • Local, regional, and national book clubs
    • DIY publication and ‘zines
    • Book festivals
    • The bibliographical and book historical community in Canada – past, present and future

    A one-page proposal and a brief biography of the author (one that includes full name, professional designation [professor, librarian, graduate student, etc.], institutional affiliation or place) should be submitted to:

    Those invited to present papers must register for the BSC-SbC conference.

    Deadline: Friday, 15 January 2016.

    Please note that the Bibliographical Society of Canada will be involved in joint sessions at the 2016 Congress. Special calls, with earlier deadlines, will be issued separately for these joint sessions.

    Call for papers

    Working in the University of Calgary’s Canadian Literary Archives
    A Round Table sponsored by the Bibliographical Society of Canada
    and the Canadian Association for the Study of Book Culture (CASBC)
    Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences
    University of Calgary
    Proposed Date of Round Table: Monday, May 30, 2016

    For many decades, the library at the University of Calgary has made a significant commitment to collecting the archives of Canadian writers. Their extensive list of holdings ranges from well-known authors (such as Robert Kroetsch, Alice Munro, and Mordecai Richler) to fairly obscure figures; it also includes other participants in the country’s literary infrastructure such as ECW Press and Descant magazine. Taking advantage of the location of Congress 2016 at the University of Calgary, the BSC and CASBC are jointly sponsoring a round table on research in these archives and invite researchers to discuss their experiences.

    Topics are open, and may include such matters as:

    • how the contents and gaps in the archive have shaped your research;
    • issues of gender, class, ethnicity and literary genre in relation to archival collections;
    • canonicity (who is collected);
    • serendipity in archival research;
    • the role of literary archives in the classroom.

    We envisage a round table of 5 or 6 speakers who will make brief presentations of no more than 10 minutes, followed by a general discussion. Graduate students and those in the midst of archival projects are encouraged to participate.

    Please submit a brief proposal (maximum 250 words) and a CV to

    Deadline: Friday, January 15, 2016

    Open Journal System

    The Papers/Cahiers of the Society are now available on the Open Journal System, which permits advanced search capabilities. The tables of contents for the most recent issues may be viewed, as well as all past issues in pdf format. To see the new site, click on 'Publications', then 'Journal' in the left sidebar.

    Emerging Scholar Prize: Donors

    The BSC Council initiated a fundraising drive in 2013 to establish the Emerging Scholar Prize. Several members of the BSC have already generously pledged their support, and we are happy to announce that a substantial amount has been raised. In order to ensure that the Prize is viable in the long-term, we are looking to raise $25,000 to create a stable endowment. If, after a reasonable amount of time, this is not feasible, monies raised to that point will be used to fund the Prize directly. Should the Prize be terminated, remaining funds will be distributed among the Society’s fellowship and awards programs.

    Please consider making a gift to the Society in support of the Emerging Scholar Prize. You may wish to use a gift to honour a friend, mentor, or colleague. Gifts are tax deductible. Cheques, made out to “Bibliographical Society of Canada” with “Emerging Scholar Prize” in the memo field, can be sent to:

    The Bibliographical Society of Canada
    c/o Tom Vincent
    304 Olympus Avenue
    Kingston, ON K7M 4T9

    The Society wishes to acknowledge the generosity of the following donors:

    Sandra Alston
    Guylaine Beaudry
    Pat Belier
    Fiona Black
    Jennifer Connor
    Anne Dondertman
    Elizabeth Driver
    Nancy Earle
    Gail Edwards
    Patricia Fleming
    Alana Fletcher
    Janet Friskney
    Alan Galey
    Carole Gerson
    Nicholas Giguère
    J. Godolphin
    Greta Golick
    Jeannine Green
    C. Gryski
    Edna Hajnal
    Balfour Halevy
    Robin Healey
    Sushil Kumar Jain
    Marcel Lajeunesse
    Val Lem
    Geoffrey Little
    Bertrum MacDonald
    Anne McGaughey
    Eli MacLaren
    Ian MacLaren
    Don McLeod
    Roger Meloche
    Jacques Michon
    Peter Mitham
    Heather Murray
    George Parker
    Linda Quirk
    Carl Spadoni
    Apollonia Steele
    Joeée Vincent
    Tom Vincent
    Germaine Warkentin
    Mary Williamson
    Joan Winearls
    Alberta Wood

    Canada’s Third National Book Collecting Contest

    Poster 2012

    Prizes were awarded to the winning entrants of the third National Book Collecting Contest in Vancouver and Waterloo on May 28, 2012.

    The first prize went to Samuel Jang, of Victoria, B.C. for his collection Aesop's Fables.

    The second prize winner was David Fernández, of Toronto, Ontario for his collection The Imaginary of Books: Homosexualities, Images, and Texts.

    The third prize winner was Gideon Foley, of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan for his collection Tasteful Books.


    The National Book Collecting Contest - Previous Winners

    Poster 2011