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SIGNATURE MOMENT
Taste beyond the bagel
SIGNATURE MOMENT
Walking Irving Layton’s Plateau District
SIGNATURE MOMENT
Visit A.M. Klein’s St. Joseph’s Oratory
SIGNATURE MOMENT
Get to know Leonard Cohen’s McGill University
SIGNATURE MOMENT
Explore the Mordecai Richler’s Mile End District

Jewish Montreal: Its Mid-Century Literary Legacy

On this Travel Pursuit, we will learn about Montreal’s Jewish community, one of North America's first Jewish enclaves, and its acclaimed literary legacy.

Jews starting coming to Quebec in the 18th and early 19th centuries but remained few in number until the first half of the 20th century. A new cohort of immigrants caused the Jewish population of Quebec to increase by more than 800 percent between 1901 and 1931. Yiddish became the third most prevalent language in Montreal, after French and English. Quebec’s Jewish population continued to grow, peaking at 120,000 in 1971. Nearly all the province’s Jews were concentrated in Montreal, making the city a centre cultural creativity. This was especially true for its writers who drew on their European roots while absorbing the polyglot culture in which they were living.

We will read selected works of four towering figures. A.M. Klein (1909–1972), the founding father of Canadian-Jewish literature, combines Jewish and French traditions in his poetry. Klein mentored the outspoken poet Irving Layton, né Israel Pincu Lazarovitch (1912–2006), who in turn influenced his friend Leonard Cohen (1934– ), who began writing poetry in Montreal before turning to a career in singing and song writing. Mordecai Richler (1931–2001) was a novelist and essayist whose abrasive but comic satire recounts the lives of the Montreal Jews he grew up with.

As we walk the streets, meet the people, hear the stories, and eat the food of Jewish Montreal, our experience will be enriched by our discussions of a literary voice unique in North America.

Ann Kirkland, the founder of Classical Pursuits, will host this trip to Montreal.

Historian and retired professor Stan Asher hosts the programs Arts Notebook on Radio Centre-Ville and The Montreal Jewish Magazine on Radio Shalom. He was also co-director and narrator of the Montreal Jewish Memories film series. Stan will lead our walking tours.

Eddie Paul, Head of Bibliographic and Information Services at the Jewish Public Library will lead our discussions.
Literary Adventures Cultural Explorations

Canada | 6 days
Literary Adventures

Dates:
Sep 10-15, 2017
Cost:
C$1995
Group Size:
16 - 18 participants

Includes:
Accommodation in double occupancy, based on hotels listed or similar, meals as indicated in the itinerary, all activities as indicated in the itinerary, all entrance fees, readings, fully escorted by Ann Kirkland. Taxes and gratuities an additional C$375 (includes PST and GST).

Itinerary at a Glance

Day 1: Arrive Montreal, informative welcome dinner with Stan Asher
Day 2: The Main and Outremont with Stan Asher
Day 3: Viewing Richler’s collection at Concordia University
Day 4: The Jewish Public Library and St. Joseph’s Oratory
Day 5: The Museum of Jewish Montreal
Day 6: Linger over brunch, depart Montreal
Get a Detailed Itinerary >

Your Tour Leader

Historian and retired professor Stan Asher has been leading groups around the Old Jewish area of Montreal as a labour of love for many years.

Ready for More?

You can request a detailed itinerary for this tour or call 1.800.387.1483 or email us with any questions or to reserve your booking!
Literary Adventures Cultural Explorations

Canada | 6 days
Literary Adventures

Dates:
Sep 10-15, 2017
Cost:
C$1995
Group Size:
16 - 18 participants

Includes:
Accommodation in double occupancy, based on hotels listed or similar, meals as indicated in the itinerary, all activities as indicated in the itinerary, all entrance fees, readings, fully escorted by Ann Kirkland. Taxes and gratuities an additional C$375 (includes PST and GST).

WHAT THEY SAY:

"It's Jewish community is a leading contributor to the cultural landscape."

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