Marius Barbeau A glimpse of Canadian Culture (1883-1969)
Introduction Objects Photos & Papers Themes Barbeau's Story Kids & Teachers

Barbeau's Story

The Popularizer (2)

In each of these fields I was a pioneer, folklore and folk arts, French Canada and Indians. Now had come the time for me to prepare a book, the Romancéro du Canada in the manner of the Romancéro de France. (Although the author of many articles and several major books on Native studies and folklore, the Romancéro, started in 1917 and published in 1937, represented for Marius Barbeau a milestone in the promotion of folk songs from French Canada.)

When the war came I was asked to prepare little booklets of songs for the soldiers : Le soldat canadien chante and another one Come a Singing! I tried to cover the Canadian repertory in its best examples in my own possession. I prepared three very large manuscripts with melodies and dissertations and illustrations. One of them has been published by the Queen's Printer in the Museum. It's called "Le rossignol y chante". And then the other two are waiting their turn. They are called "En roulant ma boule", and the third one, consisting largely of drinking songs, of lyric songs, "Le roi boit".

These are still waiting publication, and I am impatient about them because I would like to see them and correct the proofs before my own end. These are the main items of folk songs still to be published, but I have others in mind if I have time. In the course of my existence, I have prepared too many manuscripts on the various subjects I've studied: Indians, linguistics, folklore, folk songs, folk art. I have something like fifteen manuscripts, some of them big manuscripts with plenty of illustrations, and who would publish them? When I retire for good, who will know where these are in my files?

Who will care to see? I urge to get them published, and I'm interested and I'm pushing. Who will? This means that this work will be lost until it is rediscovered fifty years from now?

« Previous |