Jean Margaret Laurence (born Wemyss) was a Canadian novelist and short story writer.
Born in Neepawa, Manitoba, Canada in 1926, she graduated in Honors English from United College, Winnipeg and began to work as a reporter for the Winnipeg Citizen.
In 1949 she moved to England with her husband and then moved back to Canada in 1974.
She wrote novels, short stories, magazine articles and children’s books, and is one of the major figures in Canadian literature.
She was a Writer-in-Residence at the University of Toronto which made her a mentor and inspiration to many younger writers.
Laurence was made chancellor of Trent University from 1980 to 1983.
She was also a founder of the Writers' Trust of Canada, a non-profit literary organization that seeks to encourage Canada's writing community.
She died in 1987 in Lakefield, Ontario.
Margaret Laurence received many honours including the Governor-General’s Award, Companion of the Order of Canada and 14 honorary degrees from Canadian universities.