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Writer in Residence

Rodney Saint-Éloi | Spring 2017

FEBRUARY 9, 2017
MARCH 2, 2017


Rodney Saint-Éloi is a poet, writer, essayist and publisher born in Cavaillon (Haïti) in 1963. He studied Francophone literature at l’Université Laval. His thesis “Émergence de la poétique créole en Haïti” is about the history of the Creole language. In Haiti he founded the publishing house Mémoire, the magazine Cultura and the magazine of art and literature Boutures.

Rodney Saint-Éloi is the author of ten books of poetry, including J’avais une ville d’eau, de terre et d’arc-en-ciel heureux (1999), J’ai un arbre dans ma pirogue (2003), Récitatif au pays des ombres (2011), Jacques Roche, je t’écris cette lettre (2013, nominated for the Governor General's Award). He has translated a dozen books from French to Creole.

rodney-se_fullwidth.jpgHe edited several anthologies with Georges Castera, Lyonel Trouillot, Stanley Péan, Franz Benjamin and Laure Morali. He published Haïti Kenbe la! in 2010 with Michel Lafon (preface by Yasmina Khadra).

His work reflects his life of travel and exile, and has been translated into English, Spanish, and Japanese. A traveler and lecturer, Rodney Saint-Éloi founded the Éditions Mémoire d'encrier in 2003, which has become a leading publisher of writers of diverse backgrounds.

Rodney Saint-Éloi is a "literary activist" who believes that people live on water, bread, air and books. He was awarded the prestigious Charles-Biddle prize in 2012, which "underlines his exceptional contribution to the development of arts and culture in Quebec". Saint-Éloi has twice been nominated for the Governor-General's Award for French-language poetry.

Rodney Saint-Éloi received from the Quebec government the prestigious Prix Charles Biddle in 2012 , which recognizes "his exceptional contribution to the development of arts and culture in Quebec.". Since 2015, he has been a member of the Académie des lettres du Québec. His latest works are: Je suis la fille du baobab brûlé (Mémoire d’encrier, 2015); Moi tombée, moi levée (Le Noroit, 2016), Passion Haïti (Septentrion, 2016).