Poison confirmed as cause of poet Neruda’s death


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For years, the official verdict that Nobel Prize-winning poet Pablo Neruda died from complications of prostate cancer has been considered suspicious.

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For years, the official verdict that Nobel Prize-winning poet Pablo Neruda died from complications of prostate cancer has been considered suspicious.

Now it has been confirmed that the poet and diplomat, who died shortly after the military coup that installed General Augusto Pinochet as president of Chile, was poisoned.

Neruda’s body was exhumed a decade ago, and two years ago a team of scientists concluded that prostate cancer wasn’t the cause of death. Poisoning was confirmed recently when toxicology experts found the toxin clostridium botulinum in the body.

For more information, see wfp.to/SWn.

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One of Canada’s most acclaimed poets is appearing at the University of Winnipeg’s Leatherdale Hall on Monday, with a reading presented by the university’s Department of English and Critical Race Network.

Canisia Lubrin won the 2021 Griffin Prize for her collection The Dyzgraphxst, which also won her the Bocas Lit Fest prize for Caribbean literature. Other international honours for her work include the Derek Walcott Prize and the Windham-Campbell Poetry Prise.

The free public event begins at 7 p.m.

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St. James restaurant and bar Cork & Flame is the latest new venue for literary celebrations, with the launch tomorrow of local author Clayton Rumley’s science-fiction adventure novel, Holocene.

Rumley will read and sign copies of the book, the first of a planned trilogy, from 2-4 p.m. at the restaurant (3106 Portage Ave.).

The novel tells the story of a woman’s international search for her husband, who goes missing on a hike in a remote part of Manitoba. While the launch is open to the public, people are asked to RSVP at holocenenovel@digifi.ca.

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Linda Lori Burgess draws from 20 years of experience as a high school drama teacher and theatre director in a book aimed at teachers and directors of the art.

She’ll be joined by three former students, all now educators themselves, in a discussion of her book Five Minutes to Curtain: A Step-by-Step Guide for Creating and Staging Original Plays (J. Gordon Shillingford), on Friday at McNally Robinson Booksellers’ Grant Park location starting at 7 p.m.

The book is aimed at teachers and community directors who want to create original productions with students or group members and features a process of play creation Burgess developed in collaboration with her students on dozens of plays.

Buy on mcnallyrobinson.com

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Authoritarianism, media-savvy dictators and a more aggressive China are among the subjects of the books contending for this year’s Lionel Gelber Prize for the top book on international affairs published in English.

The international award, worth $50,000, is presented annually by the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy.

This year’s shortlisted books are Chip War: The Fight for the World’s Most Critical Technology by Chris Miller; Overreach: How China Derailed Its Peaceful Rise by Susan L. Shirk; Revolution and Dictatorship: The Violent Origins of Durable Authoritarianism by Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way; Slouching Towards Utopia: An Economic History of the Twentieth Century by J. Bradford DeLong; and Spin Dictators: The Changing Face of Tyranny in the 21st Century by Sergei Guriev and Daniel Treisman.

The winning book will be announced April 4.

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A small B.C. publisher is trying to make big waves with Canadian readers this spring.

Tidewater Press launched a social media campaign March 1 urging book clubs and individual readers to post the covers of the Canadian books they’re reading. As part of the challenge, the publisher is urging book clubs to commit to reading at least one Canadian-authored book by this Canada Day.

Canadian-written books account for 12 per cent of the books read in Canada, Tidewater says. To follow the challenge, look for #Canlitchallenge on Twitter, Facebook or, if you’re not using a government computer, TikTok.


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