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Matt Cohen Biography

(1942–1999), Korsoniloff, Johnny Crackle Sings, The Disinherited, The Colours of War

Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Cockfield Suffolk to Frances Cornford (née Darwin) Biography

Canadian novelist and short-story writer, born in Kingston, Ontario, educated at the University of Toronto and McMaster University. The fragmented, dreamlike narratives of his early novels, Korsoniloff (1969) and Johnny Crackle Sings (1971), initiated his abiding concern with the nature of personal identity in their depictions of crisis and breakdown. A more conventional manner is apparent in The Disinherited (1974), the first of a cycle of four novels set in Salem, Ontario, through which Cohen conducts an epic revaluation of rural Ontario's idyllic significance; ‘The Salem Novels’, which employ a remarkable range of narrative modes, continue with The Colours of War (1978), The Sweet Second Summer of Kitty Malone (1979), and Flowers of Darkness (1981). His other novels include Wooden Hunters (1975), The Spanish Doctor (1984), and Emotional Arithmetic (1990). Cohen's collections of short stories include The Expatriate (1982), Café Le Dog (1983) and Freud: the Paris Notebooks (1991). His poetry is collected in Peach Melba (1974) and In Search of Leonardo (1986).

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