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Di Brandt

Di Brandt Title: Instructor
Building: Ashdown
Email: d.brandt@uwinnipeg.ca


Dr. Di Brandt is the internationally acclaimed Manitoba poet, author, literary critic, editor, translator, multimedia creative arts collaborator and cultural activist. She has published more than a dozen books of poetry, fiction, creative essays and literary criticism, and has received numerous recognitions and awards for her publications and cultural work. She has held prestigious appointments at several Canadian universities, including the first Canada Research Chair in the Creative Arts, at Brandon University, and has given literary readings and lectures at festivals, conferences and other venues around the world. She began her teaching career at the University of Winnipeg in the 1980s and was delighted to return “home” to the Department of English at this university a few years ago. She was honoured to serve as Winnipeg’s inaugural Poet :aureate for 2018-2019, and one of the poems she wrote during that time, “River people,” received the GOLD National Magazine Award and was chosen for Best Canadian Poetry 2020.


Teaching Areas:
Creative Writing, Canadian Literature, Women in Literature


Books authored and co-authored:

The Sweetest Dance on Earth: New and Selected Poems.  Turnstone Press, Fall 2022.  220 pp.

Glitter & fall: Laozi's Dao De Jing, Transinhalations . Turnstone Press, Fall 2018. Poetry, 80 pp.

questions i asked my mother, 30th anniversary re-issue with Afterword by Tanis MacDonald. Turnstone Press, 2015. 100 pp. Original publication 1987. 64 pp.

Walking to Mojácar. Turnstone Press, 2010. Poetry, with translations into French by Charles LeBlanc and Spanish by Ari Belathar, and traditional Mennonite hymn and folksong texts in German and
Plautdietsch. 180 pp.

So this is the world & here I am in it. NeWest Writers as Critics X, ed. Smaro Kamboureli. NeWest Press,
2007. Creative / critical essays. 246 pp.

Speaking of Power: The Poetry of Di Brandt, Selected Poems, ed. with Intro. by Tanis McDonald, Afterword by Di Brandt. Wilfrid Laurier University Press Teaching Series, 2006. 53 pp.

Now You Care. Toronto: Coach House Press, 2003. Poetry. 100 pp.

Dancing Naked: Narrative Strategies for Writing Across Centuries. Mercury Press, 1996. Creative Essays. 168 pp.

Jerusalem, beloved. Turnstone Press, 1995. Poetry. 71 pp.

Wild Mother Dancing: Maternal Narrative in Canadian Literature. University of Manitoba Press, 1993. Literary Criticism. 188 pp.

mother, not mother. Mercury Press, 1992. Poetry. 82 pp.

Agnes in the sky. Turnstone Press, 1990. Poetry. 65 pp.

Books edited and co-edited:
Wider Boundaries of Daring: The Modernist Impulse in Canadian Women’s Poetry, ed. Di Brandt and Barbara Godard. Waterloo, ON: Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2009. 16 critical essays by leading and emerging Canadian scholars. 280 pp.

Watermelon Syrup: A Novel, with Annie Jacobsen and Jane Finlay-Young. Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2007. Fiction. 265 pp. (* Di Brandt is listed as a co-author for the book, but her role was basically advisory and editorial, both substantively and copy-editing, for WLUP).

Regenerations: Canadian Women Poets in Conversation, ed. Di Brandt and Barbara Godard. Windsor, ON: Black Moss Press, 2006. Poetry, interviews, multimedia, testimonials. 250 pp.

Awards and recognitions:


  • Manitoba Arts Council Distinction Award, 2023.
  • Honorary Doctorate, Grant McEwen University, Edmonton, Alberta, 2021.
  • Inclusion in The Manitoba 150 Women Trailblazers.  Nellie McClung Foundation, 2020.
  • Inaugural Poet Laureate, City of Winnipeg, 2018-2019.
  • Gold National Magazine Award for Poetry, 2020. The poem is also appearing in Best Canadian Poetry.
  • Gabrielle Roy Prize for “best book of literary criticism in Canada,” with Barbara Godard, for 2009
  • Foreword Magazine Gold Medal for Fiction (US), with Annie Jacobsen and Jane Finlay-Young, for 2007.
  • Brandon University Order of Merit for “exceptional contribution to BU,” 2009.
  • President’s Medal of Excellence in Research, Teaching and Service, 2009.
  • University of Windsor Research Excellence Award, 2003.
  • Canadian Authors’ Association (CAA) National Poetry Prize, for 1995.
  • McNally Robinson Manitoba Book of the Year Award, for 1990.
  • Gerald Lampert Award for “best first book of poetry in Canada,” for1987.
  • Silver National Magazine Award for Poetry, The New Quarterly, 1995.
  • Feature in Let Us Compare Mythologies: Half a Century of Canadian Poetry in English. Curated by
  • Lorna Knight. Ottawa National Library, 1989.
  • Feature in Poetry as Winnipeg Public Installation project, curated by the Winnipeg Arts Council , 2020.

Shortlisted for:

  • Fred Cogswell Prize for National Excellence in Poetry, for 2018.
  • McNally Robinson Manitoba Book of the Year Award, for 2018.
  • McNally Robinson Manitoba Book of the Year Award, with French and Spanish translations by
  • Charles Leblanc and Ari Belathar, for 2010.
  • McNally Robinson Manitoba Book of the Year Award, for 2007.
  • McNally Robinson Manitoba Book of the Year Award, for 1993.
  • Canada Prize for the Humanities, with Barbara Godard, for 2009.
  • Gold National Magazine Award, for 2007.
  • Griffin Poetry Prize, for 2003.
  • Trillium Ontario Book of the Year, for 2003.
  • Western Magazine Award, Prairie Fire Magazine, 2002.
  • Governor General’s Award for Poetry, for 1995.
  • Governor General’s Award for Poetry, for, 1987.
  • Dillons Commonwealth Poetry Prize, for 1987-1988.
  • Pat Lowther Award, for “best book of poetry by a woman in Canada,” for 2003.
  • Pat Lowther Award, for 1995.
  • CBC National Literary Competition, for Poetry, 1989.
  • CBC National Literary Competition, for Poetry, 1988.