Extraordinary Canadians:stephen Leacock by Margaret MacmillanExtraordinary Canadians:stephen Leacock by Margaret Macmillan

Extraordinary Canadians:stephen Leacock

byMargaret Macmillan

Hardcover | March 31, 2009

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Canada's foremost historian examines the life of a great humorist.

Stephen Leacock's satiric masterpiece Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town captures "the Empire forever"mentality that marked Anglo-Canadian life in the early decades of the twentieth century. Historian Margaret Macmillan—whose books Women of the Raj and Paris 1919 cast fresh light on the colonial legacy—has great affection for Leacock's gentle wit and sharp-eyed insight. The renowned historian examines Leacock's life as a poor but ambitious student who rose to become an economist, celebrated academic, and, most importantly, the beloved humorist who taught Canadians to laugh at themselves.

MARGARET MacMILLAN is the renowned author of Women of the Raj, Stephen Leacock (Extraordinary Canadians series), and the international bestsellers Nixon in China and Paris 1919: Six Months That Changed the World, which won the 2003 Governor General’s Award and the 2002 Samuel Johnson Prize. She is also the author of The Uses and Abu...
Title:Extraordinary Canadians:stephen LeacockFormat:HardcoverDimensions:192 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 0.75 inPublished:March 31, 2009Publisher:Penguin CanadaLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0670066818

ISBN - 13:9780670066810


Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Most Extraordinary Canadian I'm ashamed to admit as a Canadian that I did not know who Stephen Leacock was before reading this short biography by Margaret MacMillan. The book is not an exhaustive look, but more of a biographical essay touching on some of the highlights of the writer, academic, philosopher, and government advisor. What I appreciated mostly about the book is MacMillan's ability to contextualize Leacock's accomplishments as well as his faults. For example, we shouldn't fault him for what we today would view as his retrograde views on gender and race -- Leacock was a man of his time. The most informative section were Leacock's philosophies on the role of education, and specifically the value of a liberal arts education as compared to the modern sciences. As someone who has both, I wholeheartedly agree with Leacock's assertion. Overall, this is a very fair and balanced look at an incredible man who lived through the beginnings of Canada as a nation.
Date published: 2009-06-07

Editorial Reviews

“Lively…. precise and eloquent.” - The Globe and Mail“Margaret MacMillan does a superb job of breathing life into Stephen Leacock’s quirks and eccentricities—and evoking wrenching pity in the reader’s heart for Leacock’s often very unhappy lot in life.” - Calgary Herald“A sympathetic but not uncritical portrait.” - Geist magazine“MacMillan’s taut biography is rich in historical detail. In addition to sketching the career path of the McGill economics professor who developed a lucrative sideline in humour, the book provides fascinating glimpses into Canadian life during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.” - CBC News