Phyllis Grosskurth

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Phyllis Grosskurth
Dr. Phyllis Grosskurth.jpg
Born(1924-03-16)March 16, 1924
Toronto, Ontario
DiedAugust 2, 2015(2015-08-02) (aged 91)
Toronto, Ontario
Alma materUniversity of Toronto
University of Ottawa
Notable worksElusive Subject - A Biographer's Life, 1999

Phyllis M. Grosskurth, OC OOnt (March 16, 1924 – August 2, 2015) was a Canadian academic, writer, and literary critic.

Born in Toronto, Ontario, she received a Bachelor of Arts honours degree in English from the University of Toronto and later a Master of Arts degree from the University of Ottawa. In 1962, she was awarded a doctorate by the University of London, and in addition became a Doctor of Letters at Trinity College, University of Toronto.

She published ground-breaking studies of literary/ sexual and psycho-analytical subjects: firstly editing the journals and then publishing a biography of John Addington Symonds. This was followed by a controversial exploration of Freud and his inner circle; then a study of Melanie Klein, which was the source of a successful stage play called Mrs Klein written by Nicholas Wright. Her biography of Lord Byron, The Flawed Angel, was the first comprehensive study of the subject for a generation.

Phyllis Grosskurth was in later life professor emerita at the University of Toronto, and in 2000 was made an Officer of the Order of Canada. In 2002, she was awarded the Order of Ontario.

She first married Robert Grosskurth, with whom she had two sons and a daughter. Following their divorce she was married from 1968 to 1978 to Mavor Moore. In her later years she was married to Robert McMullan.

She died on August 2, 2015 in Toronto. [1]

Selected bibliography[edit]


  • "The Writers' Union of Canada profile". Retrieved December 30, 2005.[permanent dead link]
  • "Canadian Who's Who 1997 entry". University of Toronto Press. Retrieved November 18, 2007.[permanent dead link]