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Graeme Gibson Biography

(1934– ), Five Legs, Communion, Perpetual Motion, Gentleman Death, Eleven Canadian Novelists

Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Richard Furness Biography to Robert Murray Gilchrist Biography

Canadian novelist, born in London, Ontario, educated at the University of Edinburgh and the University of Western Ontario. He taught at Ryerson Polytechnic Institute, Toronto, from 1961 to 1968. Since 1973, he has lived with the novelist Margaret Atwood. Five Legs (1969), his first novel, and its sequel Communion (1971), present an analysis of the cultural ills of modern Canada in their narratives of man's defective relations with nature and the worsening breakdown of social cohesion. Set in nineteenth-century Ontario, Perpetual Motion (1982) is widely regarded as his finest work; the chief protagonist's fanatical project of harnessing natural energies to run a perpetual motion machine allegorizes the modern world's obsessive exploitation of the environment. Gentleman Death (1995) is a more recent novel. Gibson's other works include the interviews collected in Eleven Canadian Novelists (1973).

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