Adele Wiseman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Adele Wiseman
Born(1928-05-21)May 21, 1928
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
DiedJune 1, 1992(1992-06-01) (aged 64)
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Adele Wiseman (May 21, 1928 – June 1, 1992) was a Canadian author.

Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, she received a BA in English literature and psychology from the University of Manitoba in 1949.[1] Her parents were Russian Jews who emigrated from Ukraine to Canada, in part, to escape the pogroms that accompanied the Russian Civil War.[2]

In 1956, Wiseman published her first novel, The Sacrifice, which won the Governor General's Award,[3] Canada's most prestigious literary prize. Her novel, Crackpot, was published in 1974.[1] Both novels deal with Jewish immigrant heritage, the struggle to survive the Depression and World War II, and the challenges the next generation faced in acculturating to Canadian society.

Wiseman also published plays, children's stories, essays, and other non-fiction. Her book, Old Woman at Play, examines and meditates on the creative process while paying tribute to Wiseman's mother and the dolls she made.[4]

Wiseman was lifelong friends with Margaret Laurence who was another Canadian author from Manitoba.[1] She was an active and accessible Writer-in-Residence at the University of Windsor in her final years. At a campus rally against the First Gulf War, she read passionately a new poem denouncing war.

Selected works[edit]

  • The Sacrifice (1956)
  • Old Markets, New World (1964)
  • Crackpot (1974)
  • Old Woman at Play (1978)
  • Memoirs of a Book Molesting Childhood and Other Essays (1987)
  • Kenji and the Cricket (1988)
  • Puccini and the Prowlers (1992)

Further reading[edit]

  • Ruth Panofsky (2006). The Force of Vocation: The Literary Career of Adele Wiseman. University of Manitoba Press. ISBN 0-88755-689-2.
  • Valerie-Kristin Piehslinger: Portrayals of Urban Jewish Communities in U.S. American and Canadian Immigrant Fiction in Selected Texts by Anzia Yezierska and Adele Wiseman. AV Akademikerverlag, Saarbrücken 2013 ISBN 9783639463538 urn:nbn:de:101:1-201304031931


  • Governor General's Award for Fiction (1956) [1]
  • Beta Sigma Phi Sorority Award (1957) [1]
  • Brotherhood Award of the National Conference of Christians and Jews (1957)[1]
  • Canadian Foundation fellowship (1957)[1]
  • Guggenheim fellowship (1958) [1]
  • Canada Council Arts Scholarship (1959)[1]
  • Leipzig Book Fair Bronze Medal (1964)[1]
  • Canadian Booksellers Association Book Award (1974)[1]
  • J. I. Segal Foundation Award (1974 and 1988)[1]
  • Three Guineas Charitable Foundation Agency Award (1984–1985)[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "Adele Wiseman | Jewish Women's Archive". Retrieved 2018-04-26.
  2. ^ Boyd, Colin. "Adele Wiseman". The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved 2018-04-26.
  3. ^ "Past GGBooks winners and finalists". Governor General's Literary Awards. Retrieved 2018-04-23.
  4. ^ Ruth., Panofsky (2006). The force of vocation : the literary career of Adele Wiseman. Winnipeg, Man.: University of Manitoba Press. ISBN 0887556892. OCLC 243614302.

External links[edit]