Robert Majzels

Robert Majzels (born May 12, 1950) is a Canadian novelist, poet, playwright and translator.[1]


Majzels was born in Montreal, Quebec. In 1986, he graduated with a master's degree in English Literature from Concordia University in Montreal, where he would later teach creative writing for thirteen years. Between 2000 and 2002, he lived in Beijing, China and studied Chinese. He currently lives in Calgary, Alberta in Canada and teaches at the University of Calgary.


Majzels is strongly influenced by critical and literary theory. His works explore both the limits of language and narrative forms and their ethical repercussions. His novels highlight the artificiality of Western literary language, especially its linearity, archetypal narratives, and the ways in which it works to establish characters as believable personae (characterization). Concurrently, they explore other, neglected forms of literary expression. For example, Apikoros Sleuth experimented with a Talmudic form, noted for its polyphonic, discursive, and digressive qualities.


Partial bibliography

  • 1992: Hellman's Scrapbook a novel. Cormorant Books ISBN 0-920953-78-6
  • 1998: City of Forgetting a novel. Mercury Press ISBN 1-55128-045-0
  • 2004: Apikoros Sleuth a novel. Mercury Press ISBN 1-55128-105-8
  • 2007: The Humbugs Diet a novel. Mercury Press ISBN 1-55128-130-9
  • 2005 This Night the Kapo. Playwrights Canada Press ISBN 978-0887547829
  • 1999: A Fine Passage a novel, translated from the French Un fin passage by France Daigle. Anansi ISBN 0-88784-681-5
  • 2000: Installations poetry translated with Erin Mouré from the French Installations by Nicole Brossard. Muses' Co. ISBN 1-896239-65-X
  • 2002: Museum of Bone and Water poetry, translated with Erin Mouré from the French Musée de l’os et de l’eau by Nicole Brossard. Anansi ISBN 0-88784-686-6
  • 2004: Life’s Little Difficulties a novel, translated from the French Petites difficultés d'existence by France Daigle. ISBN 0-88784-700-5
  • 2013 For Sure translated from the French Pour sûr by France Daigle. Anansi ISBN 978-1770892040


  1. Alexander Hart, "MAJZELS, Robert" (2002) in: William H. New (ed.), Encyclopedia of Literature in Canada. University of Toronto Press ISBN 0-8020-0761-9, p. 750.
  2. "Robert Majzels". Playwrights Canada Press. Retrieved September 10, 2015.
  3. Chad W. Post (April 14, 2014). "2014 Best Translated Book Awards: Poetry Finalists". Three Percent. Retrieved April 16, 2014.
  4. Rob McLennan (December 8, 2007). "12 or 20 questions: with Robert Majzels". Alberta, Writing. Retrieved September 10, 2015.
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