Mordecai Richler Against the World / Mordecai Richler contre le monde

Mordecai Richler Against the World /  Mordecai Richler contre le monde

The Richler Library Project presents:

Mordecai Richler Against the World / Mordecai Richler contre le monde

A free-to-attend conference

31 October – 1 November, Concordia University, Montreal, QC, Canada

McConnell Building Webster Library, 1400 de Maisonneuve Blvd. W., Montreal, Quebec H3G 1M8

This bilingual conference aims to take a closer look at these contentious aspects of Richler’s work, whether it is from the standpoint of Québécois or Canadian national literatures or in relation to its polemic nature or possibly even the translation issues that it poses.

Cette conférence bilingue propose de traiter des questions qui entourent ces affiliations qui posent problème dans l’œuvre de Richler, tant du point de vue des corpus nationaux québécois et canadien que du point de vue de ses aspects polémiques ou des enjeux de traduction.

Conference Programme


Library Building (LB): McConnell Building Webster Library, 1400 de Maisonneuve Blvd. W., Montreal, Quebec H3G 1M8
Grey Nuns (GN): 1190 Guy St, Montreal, QC H3H 2L4


LB 322: Multifunctional Room (Plenaries and Round Tables)
LB 361: Friends of the Library Room (Registration and Refreshments)
LB 362: Seminar Room (Conference Panels)
Grey Nuns E-104

DAY 1 – Thursday, October 31st, 2019

8:00-9:00 Registration and Coffee (LB 361)

9:00-9:30 (LB 322): Jason Camlot, Opening Remarks


  • Michael Levine in Conversation with André Furlani (Concordia University)

10:30-11:00 Refreshment Break (LB 361)

1.2 - 11:00-12:00 (LB 322): Round Table: Translating Richler
Moderator: Judith Woodsworth (Concordia University)

  • Paul Gagné (Boréal)
  • Sherry Simon (Concordia University)

Lunch (off campus, not provided)

1.3 - 13:30-14:30 (LB 322):   PLENARY by EMMA RICHLER

Moderator: Katherine McLeod (Concordia University)

  • Emma Richler, “You may split your beer but not your infinitives”

14:30-15:00 Coffee Break (LB 361)

1.4 - 15:00-16:00 (LB 322) PLENARY by JACOB RICHLER

Moderator: Manish Sharma (Chair, Department of English, Concordia University)

  • Jacob Richler, "Writing about my father, or, A few things my father taught me about writing”

1.5 - 16:30-17:30 (The Richler Reading Rooms): TEACHING THE RICHLER LIBRARY

Moderator:  Jason Camlot (Concordia University)

  • Katherine McLeod (Concordia University), Teaching the Richler Library, or, Millennial Richler

Tour of the Richler Library by Concordia graduate student Alisha Dukelow and Jason Camlot

1.6 - 18:00 (Grey Nuns E-104)  PLENARY by ADAM GOPNIK 

  • Adam Gopnik, “Many More Mordecais”

In this talk, Adam Gopnik examines Mordecai Richler as more than just a Jewish-American novelist (a writer of the 'colonial cringe') but rather as a writer with the tonal and stylistic range of Naipaul and the South American masters of magical realism.

Facilitated by Jason Camlot

DAY 2 Friday November 1st, 2019

8:30-9:00 Coffee (LB 361)

9:00-9:30 (LB 362): Samuel Mercier (Concordia University), Opening Remarks

Moderator: Jason Camlot (Concordia University)

  • Nathalie Cooke (McGill University), Silence, Suspicion and a Slight Hint of Humour: What Richlerean Heroes are Unmade of
  • Norman Ravvin (Concordia University), Seeing Jews, and Oneself as a Jew, in Postwar Europe: Mordecai Richler’s Early Novels Alongside Other Postwar Polemists

10:30-11:00 Refreshment Break (LB 361)

2.2 - 11:00-12:00 (LB 322): PLENARY by RUTH PANOFSKY

Moderator: Nathalie Cooke (McGill University)

  • Ruth Panofsky (Ryerson University), “Richler's Panofskys”

Lunch (off campus, not provided)

2.3 - 13:30-14:30 (LB 362):  DUDDY AND BELONGING
Moderator: Andre Furlani (Concordia University)

  • Gerald Lynch (University of Ottawa), "Why Can’t Duddy Go Home Again?"
  • Marilyne Lamer (McGill University), "The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz, un « unbildungsroman »?"

14:30-15:00 Coffee Break (LB 361)

2.4 - 15:00-16:00 (LB 362) BARNEY, DANS LE TEMPS ET DANS L’ESPACE
Moderator:  Samuel Mercier (Concordia University)

  • Catherine Leclerc (McGill University), "Victoires et vulnérabilités dans Barney's Version: lectures anachroniques croisées"
  • Yan Hamel (TELUQ), "Le Paris de Barney"

Moderator: Linda Morra (Bishop’s University)

  • David Homel
  • Saleema Nawaz
  • Emma Richler

18:00 Drinks at Ziggy’s Pub
1470 Rue Crescent, Montreal, Quebec H3G 2B6, Canada


Getting to Montreal

Montreal is easily accessible by planes and trains from all the major cities in North America and Europe. Please note that the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI), requires anyone, including U.S. citizens, entering or re-entering the United States by land and sea to have a passport or other appropriate secure document.

From the Airport

The cheapest way to get downtown from the airport is to take the new airport bus, Route 747, which will bring you directly to the metro system. The fare is $10 and functions as a day pass for the Montreal metro system. Taxis are also available and charge a flat rate of $38 from the airport to downtown Montreal.

From the Train Station and Bus Station:

For those of you coming from Congress in Ottawa, train or bus are good ways to travel.  Gare Central train station is within walking distance from Concordia (if you have a suitcase on wheels, or a very cheap taxi ride.  The Bus station is at Berri, east of where Concordia is located.  To get to Concordia or the hotels from there you may either take the green line going west, from Berri-UQAM to Guy-Concordia, or take the 24 bus that runs along Sherbrooke, going west.

Getting Around Montreal

The Montreal metro system is the fastest and most cost effective way to get around the city. While individual tickets are $3.25, a three day pass is $18 (and will last through the conference).

Metro operating hours are Monday to Friday and Sunday from 5:30 a.m. to 1 a.m., and Saturday from 5:30 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. The average wait time between trains is eight minutes and three minutes during rush hour. For more information about public transportation in Montreal, visit

If you prefer getting around by taxi, it’s always very easy to flag one down on the street. You’ll also find them in front of your hotel, or at one of the city’s many taxi stands. Also, should the weather prove appropriate, you want to take advantage of the Bixi bicycle rental system that is set up throughout the Montreal metropolitan area.

Uber is still functioning in Montreal.


Please book your rooms as soon as possible.

We recommend these accommodation options with rooms available:

Things to do around Montreal

Arts & Museums

Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
Musée d’Art Contemporain
Canadian Centre for Architecture
McCord Museum
Place Des Arts (Montreal Opera, The Montreal Symphony Orchestra, and Les Grands Ballets Canadiens)
Centaur Theatre Company
The National Film Board (Events, Screenings and Personal Viewing Stations)
Segal Centre for Performing Arts
Théâtre Français à Montréal


Chowhound (Quebec and Montreal)
Resto Montreal
Montreal Food
Urban Spoon

Attractions, Activities and Entertainment

Botanical Gardens
Notre Dame Basilica
St. Joseph’s Oratory
Bell Centre
Cinema Listings
General Tourism
Local Entertainment listings for the week
Véhicule Press’s “Montreal: A Celebration” site
Yoga Montreal