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From the archives

Paper Rout

Postmedia in the gutter

Past Trauma

Richard Wagamese and an Indigenous literary resurgence

Family Pride

Profiles in gay life

Robin Roger

Robin Roger is a psychotherapist in private practice in Toronto, as well as a contributor to Musical Toronto and senior editor of Ars Medica.

Articles by
Robin Roger

Challah in the City

Two new novels explore the Jewish experience in Montreal. April 2016
Between 1971 and 1981, 15,000 Jews left Montreal. Since then the population has declined by another 10,000. Relocation is a major adjustment, even between cities in the same country, so it is unlikely that the loss of Montreal as an inspiration and setting for Canadian Jewish fiction was a prominent concern while people dismantled and rebuilt their…

Love Hurts

Lovers face up to loss and betrayal in Jane Urquhart’s new novel September 2015
In her eighth novel, The Night Stages, Jane Urquhart revisits and elaborates themes familiar to readers from such earlier works as The Underpainter and The Stone Carvers. Anchored by the story of the creation of a monumental work of art, as well as the aesthetic and sentimental apprenticeship of the…

Faithfull in Her Fashion

A roman à clef about an obnoxious English celebrity September 2014
Novelists have often used public figures as models for their characters, sometimes thinly veiled, other times more disguised. The record-holding model in literature is probably Lady Ottoline Morrell, who was caricatured, often unkindly and unfairly, by D.H. Lawrence, Aldous Huxley, Graham Greene and Alan Bennett, among others. Although she managed to withstand her unflattering caricatures with…

The Aftermath of Polio

Portrait of a clever young girl with many strikes against her March 2013
Deep compassion is not the normal reaction to Garth Drabinsky, but I found his comments about prison isolation genuinely moving. “It was devastating,” he said of his experience in Beaver Creek Institution. “I hadn’t experienced anything like that since I was three years old when I was moved to isolation and quarantine when I first had polio … Every time that door slammed shut … I was overwhelmed.” It is not the anguish of his current isolation that Drabinsky…

When Catastrophe Runs in the Family

What consolations remain, at the end of an award-winning Cape Breton trilogy June 2012
Why Men Lie, the final book in the Cape Breton Trilogy, draws Linden MacIntyre’s exploration of trauma and its reverberations to a close. Through chronicling the vicissitudes of two generations of the Gillis and MacAskil families, MacIntyre depicts an array of grim misfortunes ranging from the simple to the complex: blunt sudden…

Beyond Empathy

Twins bridge the gap between Toronto and Auschwitz. May 2009

Worse Than Dying

The unending legacy of the Halifax Explosion haunts a conflicted heroine. March 2008