Sarah Klassen

Sarah Klassen (born 1932) is a Canadian writer.[1] She is the author of A Feast of Longing and one other short fiction collection, The Peony Season, and five books of poetry. A novel, The Wittenbergs, was published in 2013. Klassen's first volume of poetry, Journey to Yalta, was awarded the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award in 1989. Klassen is the recipient of Canadian Authors Association Award for Poetry[2] and Klassen's novel, The Wittenbergs, was awarded the Margaret McWilliams Award for popular history.[3]

She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Winnipeg. Aside from writing, she has taught English in the public school system in Winnipeg and at summer institutes in Lithuania and Ukraine. Klassen was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, and currently resides there.


  • Journey to Yalta Winnipeg: Turnstone Press (1988)
  • Violence and Mercy Windsor: Netherlandic Press (1991)
  • Borderwatch Windsor: Netherlandic Press (1993)
  • Dangerous Elements Kingston: Quarry Press (1998)
  • Simone Weil: Songs for Hunger and Love Hamilton: Wolsak and Wynn (1999)
  • The Peony Season Winnipeg: Turnstone Press (2000)
  • A Curious Beatitude Winnipeg: The Muses' Company (2006)
  • A Feast of Longing Regina, SK: Coteau Books (2007)
  • Monstrance Winnipeg: Turnstone Press (2012)
  • The Wittenbergs, Winnipeg: Turnstone Press (2013)
  • The Tree of Life, Winnipeg: Turnstone Press (2020)


  • Winner, Gerald Lampert Award for Journey to Yalta, 1988.
  • Short Grain Contest, first prize, prose poem, 1989.
  • Shortlisted, Pat Lowther Award for Violence and Mercy, 1992.
  • Shortlisted, McNally Robinson Manitoba Book of the Year in 1992, 1999 and 2000.
  • Shortlisted, Margaret Laurence Fiction Award for The Peony Season, 2001.
  • National Magazine Award for Poetry, Gold, in 2000.
  • Shortlisted, Aqua Books Lansdowne Prize for Poetry, 2006.
  • Winner, Canadian Authors Association Award for Poetry for A Curious Beatitude, 2007.
  • Winner, High Plains Book Award for Fiction for A Feast of Longing, 2008.
  • Winner, Word Award for Monstrance, 2013.
  • Winner, Margaret McWilliams Award for Popular History for The Wittenbergs, 2013.[3]


  • Giessener Elektronische Bibliothek: Julia Michael, Narrating communities: constructing and challenging Mennonite Canadian identities through narrative, thesis Universität Gießen 2017, therein Demythologizing Stories of Martyrdom as Narratives of Victimization in Sarah Klassen's "Dangerous Elements", pp 59 – 73


  1. ^ Hostetler, Ann Elizabeth (2003). A cappella: Mennonite voices in poetry. Iowa City: University of Iowa Press. p. 16. ISBN 0-87745-874-X. Retrieved 19 May 2011.
  2. ^ Unrau-Poetker, Emily (13 October 2020). "Sarah Klassen — 'The Tree of Life'". The Manitoban. Retrieved 18 March 2021.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  3. ^ a b "MHS Resources: Margaret McWilliams Award Winners". The Manitoba Historical Society. Retrieved 12 July 2014.