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Daniel Gawthrop (born 1963 in Nanaimo, British Columbia) is a Canadian writer and editor.[1] He is the author of five books, most recently The Trial of Pope Benedict and The Rice Queen Diaries. As a journalist he was the original publisher and editor of Xtra! West in Vancouver,[2] and has also contributed to publications including the Vancouver Sun, The Economist, The Georgia Straight, Quill & Quire, Canadian Dimension and The Tyee. He now works as a communications representative for the Canadian Union of Public Employees.[3]

Daniel Gawthrop
Daniel Gawthrop.jpg
Nanaimo, British Columbia
OccupationWriter and editor
Notable worksThe Rice Queen Diaries, The Trial of Pope Benedict



He was educated at the University of Victoria (BA 1987), the University of King's College (BJ 1988), and Royal Roads University (MA 2009). During the 1990s, he worked as a journalist for various publications in British Columbia. In 1990, he was part of a gay writers group in the Vancouver area, which included Stan Persky, George Stanley and Scott Watson, that launched the literary magazine Sodomite Invasion Review. He was named as the first publisher and editor of Xtra! West in 1993.

During the 1994 NHL playoffs he attracted national attention when articles he had published in both Xtra! West and the Vancouver Sun, about the sex appeal of Vancouver Canucks hockey player Pavel Bure, drew commentary on Hockey Night in Canada from Don Cherry.[4]

He is an active member of the Writers' Union of Canada.[5]


His first book, a biography of AIDS activist and educator Peter Jepson-Young titled Affirmation: The AIDS Odyssey of Dr. Peter (1994),[6] examined its subject’s life and contributions in the context of the conservative politics and mediascape of the times.

His second book, an examination of the New Democratic government of Mike Harcourt titled Highwire Act: Power, Pragmatism and the Harcourt Legacy, was published in 1996.[7]

He followed up with Vanishing Halo: Saving the Boreal Forest in 1999,[8] a book commissioned by the David Suzuki Foundation to raise awareness about the world’s coniferous crown and the industrial practices that have threatened it.

After a few years in Thailand, where he worked as a sub-editor for the English language daily newspaper The Nation,[9] he returned to Canada and in 2005 published The Rice Queen Diaries,[10] a personal memoir that explores the political and cultural minefields of ethnicity and desire between white Western and Far East Asian men.

In 2013 he published The Trial of Pope Benedict: Joseph Ratzinger and the Vatican’s Assault on Reason, Compassion, and Human Dignity,[11] a critical account of its subject’s decades-long campaign to crush a liberal reform movement within the Roman Catholic Church after the Second Vatican Council.


  • Affirmation: The AIDS Odyssey of Dr. Peter (New Star Books, 1994) — ISBN 9780921586357
  • Highwire Act: Power, Pragmatism and the Harcourt Legacy (New Star Books, 1996) — ISBN 9780921586487
  • Vanishing Halo: Saving the Boreal Forest (Greystone Books/David Suzuki Foundation, 1999) — ISBN 9780898866810
  • The Rice Queen Diaries (2005, Arsenal Pulp Press) — ISBN 9781551521893
  • The Trial of Pope Benedict: Joseph Ratzinger and the Vatican’s Assault on Reason, Compassion, and Human Dignity (2013, Arsenal Pulp Press) — ISBN 9781551525273


  1. ^ GAWTHROP, Daniel. ABC Bookworld, 2013.
  2. ^ "Misreading the meaning of a monument". The Globe and Mail, July 29, 1993.
  3. ^ Media Room, Canadian Union of Public Employees.
  4. ^ "On ice; Withdrawal symptoms eased, not eliminated, by playing instead of watching". Montreal Gazette, October 15, 1994.
  5. ^ Writers' Union member page Member Profile: Daniel Gawthrop. Writers' Union of Canada.
  6. ^ "Odyssey of a man learning to live: In a 'deconstruction' of myth, author Daniel Gawthrop presents a Dr. Peter that few knew - an ordinary, fallible human being". Vancouver Sun, June 11, 1994.
  7. ^ "Fixing the record on Harcourt: In this highly readable book, Vancouver journalist Daniel Gawthrop argues persuasively that the former NDP premier got a raw deal from the local media". The Globe and Mail, March 16, 1996.
  8. ^ "A walk through the obscure -- but vital -- woods: Daniel Gawthrop trudged through the northern forests, finding yet another threat to human life on earth". Vancouver Sun, November 27, 1999.
  9. ^ "Shaming Ourselves" Archived 2016-10-01 at the Wayback Machine. The Nation, January 12, 2002.
  10. ^ "Total honesty, no feelings of guilt". Vancouver Sun, September 3, 2005.
  11. ^ "Good Pope, Bad Pope The Hatred of Benedict and Francis, Measured in Books". The Stranger, June 26, 2013.

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