The Canada Council for the Arts has awarded author Diane Schoemperlen and historian Lynne Viola this year's C$50,000 (about US$38,160) Molson Prizes, which are given annually to two recipients, one in the arts and the other in the social sciences and humanities, who have "distinguished themselves by their outstanding achievements."
Schoemperlen is the author of 14 books of fiction and nonfiction, including This Is Not My Life: A Memoir of Love, Prison, and Other Complications, which was shortlisted for the 2017 RBC Taylor Prize.
"I have learned so many things over the years, not the least of which is that the writing life is not for the faint of heart," she said. "Difficult though it may sometimes be, the most important thing is to keep moving forward."
Viola is a professor in history at the University of Toronto and a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. Her work is on the social and political history of the Stalin era in the Soviet Union, focusing on the mass repression of the 1930s.