Margaret Atwood | Criticism

This literature criticism consists of approximately 33 pages of analysis & critique of Margaret Atwood.
This section contains 8,679 words
(approx. 29 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Frank Davey

SOURCE: “The Short Stories,” in Margaret Atwood: A Feminist Poetics, Talonbooks, 1984, pp. 128–52.

In the following essay, Davey discusses recurring themes in Atwood's short fiction.

1. Iconic Prose

Atwood's short fiction contains some of her most successful prose outside Life Before Man and the prose poems of Murder in the Dark. For Atwood, the short story always has the iconic potential of poetry—to be oblique and enigmatic, to be a language structure of intrinsic attraction rather than one dependent on the action it narrates. It has the potential, in short, to act in the implicit way of ‘female’ language rather than in the explicit way of the male.

The brevity of the short story makes it a difficult form in which to tell a ‘complete’ story such as that of a character who undergoes instructive change. Unlike Atwood's four comic novels, most of her stories end inconclusively, with the...

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This section contains 8,679 words
(approx. 29 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Frank Davey
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Critical Essay by Frank Davey from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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