Joanna Scott Various Antidotes: Stories

ISBN 13: 9780312423872

Various Antidotes: Stories

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9780312423872: Various Antidotes: Stories
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"A greatly gifted and highly original artist...Various Antidotes is purely and simply wonderful."--The New York Times Book Review

The miraculous, transformative stories of Joanna Scott's Various Antidotes range across the world of history and science, alighting on figures both real and imaginary. The stories within are those of obsession and brilliance, of the ultimately human recognition that the world is larger than we believe it to be and that we, as figures within it, have through understanding the power to change that world. Whether through learning or madness or accident, the scientists and students within Various Antidotes expose us to the glorious blossom of the natural world.

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About the Author:

Joanna Scott is the author of several books of fiction, including the novels Tourmaline and Arrogance. She is a recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship and a Lannan Award, and lives with her family in Rochester, New York.

From Kirkus Reviews:

A first collection from Scott (Arrogance, 1990, etc.) explores, in luminous prose, the obdurate nature of obsession in real and imaginary characters. Each story here is a mini-case history of a famous or imaginary character conjured up to illustrate the way a particular passion becomes an obsession--an obsession that ultimately consumes the individual's life. Pieces like ``Concerning Mold upon the Skin,'' ``Nowhere,'' ``The Marvelous Sauce,'' and ``Dorothea Dix: Samaritan,'' respectively, offer insight into Dutch lens-grinder Anthony von Leeuwenhoek, who assaulted his daughter to get the tear that under his microscope would reveal a whole new universe and forever change the ``nature of belief''; a Scottish anatomist who, wanting to dissect a human heart to find where the ``body lies with disease, its demon lover,'' secretly buys cadavers from William Burke, who would be hanged in Edinburgh in 1829 for the murder of an innocent traveler; Charlotte Corday, who assassinated Marat in order to rescue France from his revolutionary zeal, and is here mourned by her cousin; and the now-dying Dorothy Dix, who, having dedicated her life to helping the criminally insane, recalls a seminal encounter with two imprisoned madwomen, and realizes that she, like them, would have been driven insane by life's injustices were it not for her grandfather, ``who taught me about the satisfaction of work.'' Three other stories limn the obsessive but unexpressed love of an Indian psychologist for his American patient (``A Borderline Case''); a blind beekeeper who breaks his sacred pact with the insects (``Bees, Bees''); and the harsh life of a rural midwife addicted to chloroform (``Chloroform Joys''). Sensitively nuanced insights into the more macabre manifestations of human behavior, by a writer of admirable originality. -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780805026474: Various Antidotes: Stories

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  0805026479 ISBN 13:  9780805026474
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co, 1994
Hardcover

9780805041767: Various Antidotes: A Collection of Short Fiction

Picador, 1996
Softcover

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