Born in Cape Breton, NS in 1954 to a family of Irish heritage, Stewart Donovan beautifully captures his experience of maritime life through poetry. Donovan received his Bachelor of Arts in Literature from St. Francis Xavier in 1976, which was followed by a Master of Arts at the University of Ottawa two years later. Donovan’s work has always been inspired by his Irish heritage, and he completed a PhD in Anglo-Irish literature and drama at the University College Dublin in 1985. That same year Donovan accepted his long-time position at St. Thomas University, where he has since taught a variety of subjects including modern literature, film, drama, and cultural studies. STU has benefited greatly from Donovan’s presence, as in 1997 he became the founder of both the Irish Studies and Film and Media Studies departments. Furthermore, Donovan founded and still works as an editor for the Nashwaak Review, a literary publication through the university which highlights local contributions to the arts, literature, history, and culture of New Brunswick. Yet Donovan’s work within literary communities stretches beyond STU, as he is a member of the Canadian Association of Irish Studies (CAIS), the International Association for the Study of Irish Literature (IASIL), and the International Ezra Pound Society. In addition to his novels and highly lauded works of non-fiction, Donovan has published three poetry collections: Cape Breton Quarry in 1990, The Molly Poems and Highland Elegies in 2005, and From Ingonish Out in 2011. Donovan currently lives in Fredericton, and continues to teach at STU.
For More Information:
Atlantic Canadian Poetry Archive: http://www.stu-acpa.com/stewart-donovan.html
New Brunswick Literary Encyclopedia: http://w3.stu.ca/stu/sites/nble/d/donovan_stewart_leo.html
STU Faculty Page: http://w3.stu.ca/stu/sites/faculty/donovan/index.aspx
From Ingonish Out: New and Selected Poetry. Wreck Cove: Breton Books, 2011.
The Molly Poems & Highland Elegies. Wreck Cove: Breton Books, 2005.
Cape Breton Quarry. Wreck Cove: Breton Books, 1990.
Wake of the Aspy: A Novel of Northern Cape Breton. Wreck Cove: Breton Books, 2012.
Maritime Union: A Political Tale. Fredericton: Non-Entity Press, 1992.
The Forgotten World of R.J. MacSween: A Life. Sydney: Cape Breton University Press, 2007.
The Essential MacSween: The Poetry of R.J. MacSween. Sydney, N.S.: Cape Breton University Press, 2008.
Photo courtesy of Dr. Donovan.