Margaret Atwood

Atwood, Margaret Eleanor

Margaret Eleanor Atwood, 1939–, Canadian novelist and poet. Atwood is a skilled and powerful storyteller whose novels, mainly set in the near future, have sometimes made use of such popular genres as historical, detective, and science fiction. Her writing typically treats contemporary issues, such as feminism, sexual politics, the fate of Canada and Canadian literature, and the intrusive nature of mass society. Her best-known novel, The Handmaid's Tale (1986), is set in a mid-21st-century American dystopia ruled by religious extremists. Among her other works are novels such as The Edible Woman (1969), Surfacing (1972), Bodily Harm (1981), The Robber Bride (1993), Alias Grace (1996), The Blind Assassin (2000; Booker Prize), the postapocalyptic Oryx and Crake (2003) and its companion piece The Year of the Flood (2009), and The Penelopiad (2005). Her short-story collections include Dancing Girls (1983), Bluebeard's Eggs (1993), and Moral Disorder (2006). She also has written several volumes of poetry, including The Circle Game (1965), Power Politics (1970), and True Stories (1981), and numerous essays. Her nonfiction includes Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth (2008) and In Other Worlds: SF and the Human Imagination (2011).

See interviews in E. G. Ingersoll, ed., Margaret Atwood: Conversations (1990) and V.-L. Beaulieu, ed., Two Solicitudes: Conversations (1998); biography by N. Cooke (1998); studies by A. E. and C. N. Davidson, ed. (1981), S. E. Grace and L. Weir (1983), F. Davey (1984), J. Mallinson (1984), J. H. Rosenberg (1984), B. H. Rigney (1987), J. McCombs, ed. (1988), K. VanSpanckeren and J. G. Castro, ed. (1988), S. Hengen (1993), E. Rao (1993), S. R. Wilson (1993), C. Nicholson, ed. (1994), C. A. Howells (1996), L. M. York, ed. (1994), K. F. Stein (1999), H. Bloom, ed. (2000), R. M. Nischik, ed. (2000), P. Cuder (2003), C. Tennant (2003), and S. R. Wilson (2003).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2013, The Columbia University Press.

Selected full-text books and articles on this topic

Margaret Atwood: Vision and Forms
Kathryn VanSpanckeren; Jan Garden Castro.
Southern Illinois University Press, 1988
Margaret Atwood's Fairy-Tale Sexual Politics
Sharon Rose Wilson.
University Press of Mississippi, 1993
The Callisto Myth from Ovid to Atwood: Initiation and Rape in Literature
Kathleen Wall.
McGill-Queens University Press, 1988
Fiction in the Quantum Universe
Susan Strehle.
University of North Carolina Press, 1992
Librarian’s tip: Chap. Six "Cat's Eye and the Subjective Author: Margaret Atwood"
The Dominion of Women: The Personal and the Political in Canadian Women's Literature
Wayne Fraser.
Greenwood Press, 1991
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 5 "'To Refuse to Be a Victim': Anti-Americanism in the Early Novels of Margaret Atwood"
Faith of a (Woman) Writer
Alice Kessler-Harris; William McBrien.
Greenwood Press, 1988
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 6 "Margaret Atwood, Margaret Laurence, and Their Nineteenth-Century Forerunners"
Women Shapeshifters: Transforming the Contemporary Novel
Thelma J. Shinn.
Greenwood Press, 1996
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 2 "The Word Made Man: Margaret Atwood"
Decade of Novels: Fiction of the 1970s : Form and Challenge
Charles Berryman.
Whitston, 1990
Librarian’s tip: "1972: Margaret Atwood, Surfacing" begins on p. 32
The Postcolonial Exotic: Marketing the Margins
Graham Huggan.
Routledge, 2001
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 8 "Margaret Atwood Inc., or, Some Thoughts on Literary Celebrity"
Lost in Space: Probing Feminist Science Fiction and Beyond
Marleen S. Barr.
University of North Carolina Press, 1993
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 13 "Ms. Sammler's Planet: Margaret Atwood, Saul Below, and Joanna Russ Rescue the Female Child's Story"
The Dialogic Self: Reconstructing Subjectivity in Woolf, Lessing, and Atwood
Roxanne J. Fand.
Susquehanna University Press, 1999
Margaret Atwood, Carol Shields, and "That Moodie Bitch"
Hammill, Faye.
American Review of Canadian Studies, Vol. 29, No. 1, Spring 1999
You Are What You Eat: The Politics of Eating in the Novels of Margaret Atwood
Parker, Emma.
Twentieth Century Literature, Vol. 41, No. 3, Fall 1995
Food, Consumption, and the Body in Contemporary Women's Fiction
Sarah Sceats.
Cambridge University Press, 2000
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 4 "Sharp Appetities: Margaret Atwood's Consuming Politics"
Scene, Symbol, Subversion: The Evolving Uses of Mapping in Margaret Atwood's Fiction
Shechels, Theodore F.; Sweeney, Kathleen Mackin.
American Review of Canadian Studies, Vol. 31, No. 3, Autumn 2001
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