Strange Things: The Malevolent North in Canadian Literature

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9781844080823: Strange Things: The Malevolent North in Canadian Literature
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Margaret Atwood's witty and informative book focuses on the imaginative mystique of the wilderness of the Canadian North. She discusses the 'Grey Owl Syndrome' of white writers going native; the folklore arising from the mysterious-- and disastrous -- Franklin expedition of the nineteenth century; the myth of the dreaded snow monster, the Wendigo; the relations between nature writing and new forms of Gothic; and how a fresh generation of women writers in Canada have adapted the imagery of the Canadian North for the exploration of contemporary themes of gender, the family and sexuality. Writers discussed include Robert Service, Robertson Davies, Alice Munro, E.J. Pratt, Marian Engel, Margaret Laurence, and Gwendolyn MacEwan.This superbly written and compelling portrait of the mysterious North is at once a fascinating insight into the Canadian imagination, and an exciting new work from an outstanding literary presence.

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About the Author:

Margaret Atwood is the author of more than thirty books of fiction, poetry and critical essays. The Handmaid's Tale, Cat's Eye, Alias Grace were shortlisted for the Booker Prize, The Blind Assassin won in 2001, and she has won many other literary prizes in other countries.

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Atwood returns to the matter of her wonderful "thematic guide to Canadian literature," Survival (1972), in lectures on three particular themes and the ways Canadian writers have treated them. Those themes are the devouring, implacable, direly feminine North as expressed in treatments of John Franklin's disastrous 1840s attempt to navigate a northwest passage to Asia; the impulse of whites to "go native" as exemplified by the naturalist Grey Owl, an Englishman who assumed the identity of a Canadian Indian; and the ice-hearted, human flesh^-eating Canadian Indian monster, the Wendigo. Atwood analyzes poems, songs, and stories on those themes, peppering her presentation with the keen and hilarious witticisms that distinguish her own poems and fiction. Moreover, when in the last lecture she takes up women writers' feminizing of the themes, she discloses strong satiric currents in their work that keep us richly entertained as well as fascinated and informed. If lecturers were all as good as Atwood, chautauqua might come roaring back in popularity. Ray Olson

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Margaret Atwood
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Book Description Little, Brown Book Group, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Margaret Atwood s witty and informative book focuses on the imaginative mystique of the wilderness of the Canadian North. She discusses the Grey Owl Syndrome of white writers going native; the folklore arising from the mysterious-- and disastrous -- Franklin expedition of the nineteenth century; the myth of the dreaded snow monster, the Wendigo; the relations between nature writing and new forms of Gothic; and how a fresh generation of women writers in Canada have adapted the imagery of the Canadian North for the exploration of contemporary themes of gender, the family and sexuality. Writers discussed include Robert Service, Robertson Davies, Alice Munro, E.J. Pratt, Marian Engel, Margaret Laurence, and Gwendolyn MacEwan.This superbly written and compelling portrait of the mysterious North is at once a fascinating insight into the Canadian imagination, and an exciting new work from an outstanding literary presence. Seller Inventory # AA29781844080823

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Book Description Little, Brown Book Group, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Margaret Atwood s witty and informative book focuses on the imaginative mystique of the wilderness of the Canadian North. She discusses the Grey Owl Syndrome of white writers going native; the folklore arising from the mysterious-- and disastrous -- Franklin expedition of the nineteenth century; the myth of the dreaded snow monster, the Wendigo; the relations between nature writing and new forms of Gothic; and how a fresh generation of women writers in Canada have adapted the imagery of the Canadian North for the exploration of contemporary themes of gender, the family and sexuality. Writers discussed include Robert Service, Robertson Davies, Alice Munro, E.J. Pratt, Marian Engel, Margaret Laurence, and Gwendolyn MacEwan.This superbly written and compelling portrait of the mysterious North is at once a fascinating insight into the Canadian imagination, and an exciting new work from an outstanding literary presence. Seller Inventory # AA29781844080823

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