Image of many pink pencils shaping to form a diamond shape.

Trailblazers Women Canadian Publishing

Image of many pink pencils shaping to form a diamond shape.

The cover of “Toronto Trailblazers: Women in Canadian Publishing”, 2021 Heritage Toronto Awards Book Nominee. Cover photo:

Author: Ruth Panofsky

Publisher: University of Toronto Press

Toronto Trailblazers explores the influence of seven key women who, despite pervasive gender bias, helped advance a modern literary culture for Canada.

Publisher Irene Clarke, scholarly editors Eleanor Harman and Francess Halpenny, trade editors Sybil Hutchinson, Claire Pratt, and Anna Porter, and literary agent Bella Pomer made the most of their vocational prospects, first by securing their respective positions and then by refining their professional methods. Individually, each woman asserted her agency by adapting orthodox ways of working within Canadian publishing. Collectively, their overarching approach emerged as a feminist practice. Through their vision and method these trailblazing women disrupted the dominant masculine paradigm and helped transform publishing practice in Canada.

About the Author: Ruth Panofsky

Ruth Panofsky is a professor in the Department of English at Ryerson University.