Katherine Govier

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Katherine Mary Govier (born July 4, 1948) is a Canadian novelist. Born in Edmonton, Alberta, she was educated at the University of Alberta and York University. In 1997, she was awarded the Marian Engel Award for a woman writer in mid-career. Prior to that she was shortlisted for the Trillium Award in 1994, and won the City of Toronto Book Award in 1992. She has been made a Distinguished Alumna of the University of Alberta and is one of York University's "Famous Fifty" graduates. She has been Chair of the Writers' Trust of Canada and President of PEN Canada. Her novel "Creation" was a New York Times Notable Book of 2003.

Govier lives in Toronto, Ontario with her partner Nicholas Rundall. She has two children, Robin and Emily Honderich. She was previously married to John Honderich, former publisher of the Toronto Star.

Criticism of Wikipedia[edit]

On February 9, 2011, Govier wrote an article published in the Ottawa Citizen which discussed a previous January 2011 New York Times article on the disparity of female to male writers who contribute to the writing and editing of Wikipedia.[1][2] The original N.Y. Times article correctly noted that Wikipedia is unwilling to apply gender based quotas to its contributors –its works have never been subject to such restrictions and can be both created and edited anonymously, with or without a user account.[3]

Govier's article criticized Wikipedia's stance on who should be permitted to contribute to the encyclopedia, stating: "Wikipedia disdains rules, hierarchies and orthodoxies. It pledges to be open "even to misogynists." It will not adopt a new way to gather information. The result is that "the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit" is in danger of losing its legitimacy."[1]



  • Random Descent - 1979
  • Going Through the Motions - 1982
  • Between Men - 1987 ISBN 0-670-81499-7
  • Hearts of Flame - 1991
  • Angel Walk - 1996 ISBN 0-316-31906-6
  • The Truth Teller - 2000
  • Creation - 2002
  • Three Views of Crystal Water - 2005
  • The Ghost Brush - 2010 ISBN 9781554686438

Short Story Collections[edit]

  • Fables of Brunswick Avenue - 1985
  • Before and After - 1989
  • The Immaculate Conception Photo Gallery - 1994

Anthologies Edited[edit]

  • Without a Guide: Contemporary Women's Travel Adventures - 1994
  • Solo: Writers on Pilgrimage - 2004


  1. ^ a b Govier, Katherine. [1], The world according to men As with much of history, it seems Wikipedia is being written mostly by males. The rest of us need to log on, writes Katherine Govier. Ottawa Citizen online, February 9, 2011. Retrieved from Ottawacitizen archives July 21, 2013.
  2. ^ Cohen, Noam. Define Gender Gap? Look Up Wikipedia’s Contributor List, New York Times, January 31, 2011, p.A1. Retrieved online February 27, 2011.
  3. ^ Wikimedia.org. Help:Registration, retrieved from Wikipedia.org February 27, 2011.

External links[edit]