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Gabrielle Roy (1909–1983)

Autor(a) de The Tin Flute

30+ Works 1,806 Membros 54 Críticas 7 Favorited

About the Author

Gabrielle Roy was born on March 22, 1909 in St. Boniface, Manitoba, Canada. She attended the Winnipeg Normal Institute, where she earned top honors in both her English and French classes. After she completed her schooling, she spent a month teaching in the summer before accepting a job at a school mostrar mais for a year. In 1930, after that first year of teaching, she was offered a permanent position in St. Boniface. Roy decided that she wanted to go to Europe for a year with the meagre savings she had managed to accumulate throughout her seven years teaching in St. Boniface. When asked, she would tell people that she was going to France and England to study Drama. She had been a member of a drama troupe, Le Cercle Molière, throughout her teaching years. Once there, she took a teaching post in the summer of 1937 to gain enough to survive in Europe. She had planned to only stay a year, but that turned into two, and would have been longer if not for the outbreak of World War II. It was here that Roy began to write, and published a few articles in a French journal. Roy returned to Canada and made her home in Montreal where for six years she earned a living as a freelance reporter. Her first novel, Bonheur d'Occasion started out as a newspaper article and turned into a novel over 800 pages long. It was published in 1945. In 1947, she won the Prix Fémina from France for Bonheur d'Occasion, and the Governor General's award for the English translation, The Tin Flute. She returned to France, to the place that had originally inspired her writing and in 1950 published La Petite Poule d'Eau (Where Nests the Water Hen), after her return to Canada. 1957 also brought Roy her second Governor General's award, this time for the English translation of Rue Deschambault (Street of Riches), a novel she published in 1955. For the next several years, Roy received many awards as well as critical success, but it was not until 1978 that she won her third and final Governor General's award for Ces Enfants de Ma Vie (Children of My Heart). This was her final novel, although a compilation of some of her work as a journalist, and several children's books followed this last book. Roy's autobiography La Détresse et l'Enchantement (Enchantment and Sorrow) was not published until 1984, a year after her death. Gabrielle Roy died on July 13, 1983 of heart failure. (Bowker Author Biography) mostrar menos
Image credit: Bank of Canada

Obras por Gabrielle Roy

The Tin Flute (1945) 735 exemplares
Children of My Heart (1977) 184 exemplares
Street of Riches (1955) 141 exemplares
Where Nests the Water Hen (1950) 139 exemplares
The Road Past Altamont (1966) 107 exemplares
The Cashier (1954) 86 exemplares
Windflower (1970) 80 exemplares
The Hidden Mountain (1961) 54 exemplares
Garden in the Wind (1975) 46 exemplares
Enchanted Summer (1976) 30 exemplares
Temps qui m'a manque (le) (1997) 20 exemplares
Cliptail (1979) 11 exemplares

Associated Works

The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction (1983) — Contribuidor — 1,132 exemplares
From Ink Lake: Canadian Stories (1990) — Contribuidor — 129 exemplares
The Canadian Children's Treasury (1994) — Contribuidor — 56 exemplares
Great Canadian Short Stories (1971) — Contribuidor — 53 exemplares
The Penguin Book of Modern Canadian Short Stories (1982) — Contribuidor — 12 exemplares
The Oxford Book of French-Canadian Short Stories (1984) — Contribuidor — 7 exemplares


Conhecimento Comum



Group Read, February 2023: The Tin Flute em 1001 Books to read before you die (Março 2023)


Québec's Quiet Revolution (La Révolution tranquille) was still a good dozen years in the future when Gabrielle Roy wrote The Tin Flute. It was a massive social movement which threw off the yoke of the Catholic Church, and the economic, cultural, and political dominance of the anglophone minority establishment. Many of the francophones who led and who supported the movement would have come from homes where that was the way things were; often accepted without question.

World War II began to change the status quo. This is where Roy's novel begins. Set in Saint Henri, among the tanneries, factories, and railways of one of Montréal's worst slums, it tells the story of the LaCasse family, a not untypical family for the time. Florentine, the eldest child at nineteen, worked at a lunch counter at a five and dime store. She was determined she would never lead the life her mother had. Rose-Anna, her mother, was pregnant with her twelfth child. Azarius, her father, was about to be fired from his current job as a taxi driver. Although full of ideas and schemes, he was never able to get anything off the ground, pulling his family further and further into poverty.

May 1, the traditional moving day in Montréal was approaching quickly , and cheaper accommodation had to be found for the family. Each year's move was to smaller and dingier quarters despite the increase in family size. Although Rose-Anna subscribed to the idea that her children should go to school, it was not always possible. While the older ones had completed an expected number of grades, the younger ones often couldn't attend school due to illness, or lack of basics such as waterproof shoes in which to get there.

The war had brought new demands for labour, new opportunities, but also new demands for housing and higher prices. The family was surviving on Florentine's wages, so her brother made the decision to enlist for the monthly stipend it would bring. The war was a matter of contention in their community, however. Presented by the authorities as a war for the King and the British Empire, it had little relevance for a population which still identified with France, even almost two hundred years after the conquest. The fallout from the Conscription Crisis of 1917 still lingered in people's minds, and they were not eager to help out.

Some, however, saw opportunity on the domestic front in the war. Such a one was Jean Lévesque. Florentine naively envisioned herself in love with Jean, who saw her as just another conquest, while at the same time being inexplicably drawn to her.
He knew now that Florentine's house reminded him of the thing he most dreaded: poverty, that implacable smell of poor clothing, the poverty you could recognize with your eyes shut. He realized that Florentine personified this kind of wretched life against which his whole being was in revolt. And in the same moment he understood the feeling that drew him toward her: she was his own poverty, his solitude, his sad childhood, his lonely youth. She was all that he had hated, all that he had left behind him, but also everything that remained intimately linked to him, the most profound part of his nature and the powerful spur of his destiny.
He had to reject her. Emmanuel Létourneau, his old friend, did fall in love with Florentine, who in turn spurned him until she needed him.

This is a surprising book for the time in its frankness. A first novel, it became a classic in French speaking Canada, and on translation into English, a pan Canadian classic. It is now a Penguin Modern Classic. Roy won the Governor - General's Award with it, but as an indication of just one thing wrong with the two solitudes, she did not win it until it had been translated into English. At the time of its publication there was no award for fiction in French. She won again in translation in 1957. An award for French fiction was first given out in 1959, and she won again, in French in 1977. She has also won France's Prix Femina, and Québec's Prix David.
… (mais)
2 vote
SassyLassy | 12 outras críticas | Jan 12, 2024 |
Der er noget meget tidstypisk over Roys debutroman fra 1945. Det er som om, hvert land har sine romaner om depressionen og fattigdommens udmarvende ødelæggelse af de mest udsatte familier, historier hvor hvert lyspunkt og kilde til håb om bedring afløses af endnu større fortvivlelse og ydmygelse for hænderne af dem, der har deres på det tørre. Her er scenen sat hos fransk-canadierne i en af Montreals forstæder, men vi kunne lige så vel være blandt Steinbecks daglejere i Californien, Harald Kiddes arbejdere i København eller Orwells fattige i London og Paris. Alligevel er der en overraskende sprække – det vender jeg tilbage til.

Romanen udspiller sig i foråret 1940. I åbningsscenen er den unge Florentine på arbejde som servitrice i en café i et stormagasin, hvor hun betages af den lidt ældre Jean. Det er forunderligt, for han behandler hende dybest set som skidt, men alligevel drømmer hun snart om, at han skal have lige så meget lyst til hende, som hun får til ham. Jean er ung og ambitiøs, bruger aftenerne på at studere, og han vil ikke lade noget stå i vejen for sin egen flugt fra en udsat baggrund.

Herfra breder historien sig ud. Florentine er den ældste i Azarius’ og Rose-Annas store børneflok. De blev gift, da Azarius var en ung, flot tømrer, og selvom tilværelsen har været hård ved dem, så er der stadig ægte kærlighed og nænsomhed mellem dem. Problemet er, at Azarius ikke har kunnet finde arbejde inden for sit fag siden depressionen, og han er for stolt til at acceptere dårligere jobs eller til at ydmyge sig over for arbejdsgiverne for et par dages løn. I stedet kaster han sig ud i risikable luftkasteller, mens familien synker dybere og dybere ned i armod. Det er Rose-Anna, der holder sammen på husholdningen, det er hende der får pengene til at strække, spekulerer over næste års bolig, når de uvægerligt siges op til maj, og sidder oppe hele natten for at lappe de nedslidte klæder. Det er kun Florentines løn, der sikrer overlevelsen, men hvor længe vil hun ofre alt for en familie, der er som et bundløst hul af elendighed. Og vil de næste i søskendeflokken hjælpe til, eller vil de flygte, så snart muligheden byder sig?

Romanen dykker dybt ned i de enkelte personers komplicerede følelsesliv. Det giver nuancer, men det kan også næsten være for meget af det gode, når Florentine f.eks. veksler mellem foragt og forelskelse i Jean talrige gange på fem minutter. Samtidig farver Roy handlingen med beskrivelser og tillægsord, der gør læsningen lidt tung og som samtidig peger lidt for tydeligt på det triste udfald, som man meget tidligt ved vil komme.

Alligevel er der som nævnt en overraskende åbning, nemlig krigen. Der bliver fulgt med i udviklingen i Europa, også i det det jævne Saint-Henri, hvor unge mænd pludseligt står over for nye valg. Oprustningen sparker økonomien i gang og giver nye karriereveje, uanset om den enkelte er drevet af ambitioner som Jean eller af frygten for at blive indkaldt. Soldatertilværelsen giver i sig selv nye – om end farlige – veje ud af fattigdommen, og flere af bogens personer vælger netop det. Hvis man alligevel er ved at gå til grunde, så er det måske ikke så slemt at tage chancen i hæren?

Roy balancerer fint mellem at vise de reelle muligheder som krigen giver og de lige så reelle sociale forskelle, der bæres med ind i militærets orden. Graden af frihed og mængden af muligheder er ikke ligeligt fordelt – heller ikke når krigen bryder ud.
… (mais)
Henrik_Madsen | 12 outras críticas | Feb 17, 2023 |
I have decided I don't like her writing. the stories aren't realistic, the people are boring. at least they are short.
mahallett | 5 outras críticas | Aug 24, 2022 |
mahallett | 8 outras críticas | Jul 4, 2022 |



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