Thursday, July 28, 2022

Burning Questions

Burning Questions: Essays and Occasional Pieces, 2004 to 2021Burning Questions: Essays and Occasional Pieces, 2004 to 2021 
by Margaret Atwood
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This volume is a collection of essays, speeches, and book introductions written by Atwood in the beginning of the 21st century. Quite a few of the pieces are about nature, politics, and environmental issues; in Atwood's capable hands these are clear statements of her positions, but they don't feel like diatribes. I most enjoyed the pieces where she is talking about how other of her own works came into being. One of these is "The Writing of the Testaments" which was a fascinating glimpse into her mind regarding this sequel to The Handmaids' Tale
"As Thomas King has remarked, history isn't what happened--it's the stories we tell about what happened. How we interpret and present what happened. And that interpretation and presentation is always taking place in the now of the speaker or interpreter because where else can it take place? Therefore the past as we know it is always changing. Some parts of it are buried, but then dug up again. Some are spun positively, and then spun negatively. Statues are erected to admired or important figures, then they are pulled down."
This book is one of my 20 Books of Summer, and it also counts toward the Canadian Reading Challenge.

1 comment:

  1. I'm reading these essays atm....very slowly though, trying to savour each one before moving onto the next - I could still be reading it next year!!!!!


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