Articles written by: Irwin Block

Mark Abley lends a voice to a Canadian black sheep
Features

Mark Abley lends a voice to a Canadian black sheep

Mark Abley has had a good professional relationship with that fickle woman Lady Luck—he’s been at the right place at the right time so that his talent as a poet, journalist, non-fiction writer and editor has received broad recognition. But just as Montreal-based Abley, 57, had completed his latest work […]

Mark Abley on co-operation among Canadian political parties
Features

Mark Abley on co-operation among Canadian political parties

Mark Abley created a stir in The Gazette this fall with an opinion piece in which he called for an alliance of the left as the only way to end the division of anti-Conservative voting patterns. “Hard-core New Democrats, lifelong Liberals and fervent Greens have their differences, of course,” he […]

Marion Blake in her home office at Manoir Westmount.
Features

Editor gambled on moving to a Westmount residence … and won

For some, moving to a senior’s residence can be traumatic, for others it can be liberating, the right decision at the right time. That was the case for Marion Blake, who 10 years ago moved back to Canada after a decade in Cambridge, England, and who remembers the challenge as […]

He who laughs last is reading Josh Freed
Features / Reviews & Previews

He who laughs last is reading Josh Freed

Life in Montreal would be a lot more boring if we didn’t have Josh Freed poking fun at its vagaries. In his inimitable style, Freed has a way of turning commonplace activities into sources of joyful absurdity. Josh’s column in The Gazette is the first thing many of us turn […]

Louise Harel says she plans to return to university for a week of English immersion.
Features

Louise Harel, the woman who would be mayor

Now that Montreal has its first anglo mayor in a century, Louise Harel has a new record in mind: becoming the city’s first female mayor. With city hall shrouded in a black cloud of collusion, corruption and kickbacks, Harel sees herself as having a credible chance of taking over next […]

Harriet Johnson is among 33 people who have signed on to a class-action lawsuit against the Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children.
Features

‘I saw the devil’ in Home for Colored Children, alleged abuse victim says

Physical, psychological and sexual abuse of minors leaves an indelible mark on their lives. The pain never goes away completely, but more and more victims are seeking recognition and retribution. Harriet Johnson, mother of six and a Montreal resident, has taken a two-track approach for abuse suffered at the Nova […]

The Sunshine Boys at the Segal Centre a rollicking theatre experience
Features / Reviews & Previews

The Sunshine Boys at the Segal Centre a rollicking theatre experience

There was not an empty seat in the house, and when the action hit high gear, not a dry eye from all the laughter. This was the scene last month at the Segal Centre as veteran actors Aron Gonshor and Sam Stein went through their shtick as out-of-work and estranged […]

Trench Patterns at Bain St. Michel: Good intentions clash with ideology
Reviews & Previews

Trench Patterns at Bain St. Michel: Good intentions clash with ideology

The audience walks into the intimate confines of Infinitheatre and sees her, the central figure in Trench Patterns, lying on a hospital bed. The backlit screen showing the cross on Mount Royal above a mound of trees and hospital sounds suggest it’s the Royal Vic. Scenes of combat fill the […]

Reviews & Previews

Author Peter Beinart critiques settlements, calls for boycott

It was one of the most electric moments in the years I spent as a student at McGill University. On January 31, 1961, Hillel House on Peel St. was packed with students and professors who were sitting on tables and stairs to hear controversial British historian Sir Arnold Toynbee debate […]

Remembrance Day: Younger veterans carry the torch
Features

Remembrance Day: Younger veterans carry the torch

Bravery, love of country, willingness to defend Canadian values and confront tyranny—all are qualities that accompany our soldiers who serve overseas. On November 11, we remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice, as well as those who came back injured physically or emotionally from combat. We also pay tribute to […]