March 29, 2002
The newly released edition of the bilingual journal of arts and ideas, which will serve as its last, is a collection of review-style writings produced by authors in Maine, Quebec, and the Maritime Provinces. Each selection in the electronic publication reflects some cultural, geographical, physical or metaphysical aspect of the region.
River Revue was first published, in journal form, in 1995 through a University of Maine System Libra Professorship Grant awarded to UMFK English faculty member Paul Hedeen, who served as the journal's first editor. Responsibility for the publication changed hands and was most recently edited by former English faculty members Bernard Quetchenbach and Tammie Fleeger, who was the final editor. Assistant professor of English Jeffrey Yule was responsible for compiling the final on-line edition.
The final edition features pieces by several well-known local and regional authors, including three poetry selections written by acclaimed Franco-American writer Rhea Cote Robbins. Written primarily in English, Robbins' works are peppered with French words that are commonly used in the Valley.
Selections written in English include works by authors Margaret C. Kay, J.R. Corrigan, Joe Blades, Robert Root, James Koller, Jack Rickard, Simon Perchik, Steven Riel, Mary K. Hebert, C. Hood Frazier, Simon Perchik, Steven Riel, Mary K. Hebert, and Alice Bolstridge.
French selections were authored by Albert Roy, Sophie Berube, E.M. Langille, C. Baurin, and Alain Raimbault.
In addition to featuring poetry and short stories, the River Revue includes the edited translation of an interview with Acadie's best-known author Antonine Maillet, conducted by Jacqueline Chamberland Blesso.
Maillet has authored 17 novels, including Pelagie-la-charette, for which she was awarded France's most prestigious literary prize, the Prix Goncourt, in 1979. She has also written 13 plays, including her best-known work La Sagouine, which has been performed in the Valley.
She was born in 1929 in the Acadian community of Bouctouche, New Brunswick. In 1950, she received a B.A. from the Université de Moncton and, nine years later, completed an M.A. at the same institution, writing a thesis on Gabrielle Roy. She continued her studies at the Université Laval, earning a PhD in literature in 1970. Since then she has received 27 honorary doctoral degrees.
Between 1971 and 1976, she taught literature and folklore first at Laval and then at Montreal. Later, she worked for Radio-Canada in Moncton as a scriptwriter and host. Maillet is currently the chancellor of the Université de Moncton.
In her interview with Blesso, Maillet is asked about several issues, including the discrimination that is often faced by people in the St. John Valley and other regions that speak different French dialects. She also makes reference to several of her works throughout the conversation.
The final edition of the River Revue/Review Riviere can be found on-line at http://riverreview.umfk.maine.edu. A printable version of the publication can be accessed at that address.