100 Stories

Tim Lilburn, B.A. M.A. (Gonzaga), Ph.D. (McMasters)

Professor, Department of Writing and Religious Studies, University of Victoria

Tim Lilburn

Tim graduated from Campion in 1974.

On his days at the college, Tim remarks that Professor George Marshall’s class in Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit really stood out to him. So too did rich discussions with the Chaplaincy Team: Roger Yaworski and Bernie Caroll. Father Molloy was also influential -- “He gave me instructions as I prepared to enter the Church. He also facilitated my involvement with CUSO (Canadian University Students Overseas). I served as a teacher in Nigeria, 1974-1976.”

Tim marks two milestone events that stand out in his career. In 2003, he won the Governor General’s Award in Literature for his book of poetry, Kill-site. He also was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 2014.

Tim feels we can contribute to our community simply by being deliberate and intentional with our talents:

“I have always thought of writing as a form of “community service,” more than merely decorative. Writing can suggest new ways of being in the world. A question that has preoccupied me over the last three decades is how to make more intimate and vital our ties to the land – how to be here? How to live deeply from one’s ground? How to be autochthonous? I’ve tried to suggest some ways in my writing to be linked to place, many arising out of my reading of the Western contemplative tradition from the pre-Socratics to Simone Weil and Jan Zwicky.”

Dr. Marshall may have initiated his desire to write about philosophical ideas. His work serves as a call to others to contemplate their personal connections to their environment. A collection of essays is in the works, slated for release in October of 2017 titled, The Larger Conversation: Contemplation and Place.