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Image provided by Tanis MacDonald

Tanis MacDonald
Associate Professor, Department of English and Film Studies, Wilfrid Laurier University

Affiliation with UVic English: Alumni, Ph.D., English, 2005

Special Book: Lives of Girls and Womene, Alice Munro

When did you first read this book: I first read this book when I was fifteen. I was immediately taken by the way the narrator spoke about gender and class in Canada. I even had an argument with my boyfriend about what “women’s writing” was when he saw me reading the book. I count it as an early feminist experience.

Which sentence from this book has special significance for you?

From the title story: “It was glory I was after, walking the streets of Jubilee like an exile or spy, not sure from which direction fame would strike, or when, only convinced from my bones out that it had to. In this conviction my mother had shared, she had been my ally, but now I would no longer discuss it with her; she was indiscreet, and her expectations took too blatant a form.” I love this moment when Del’s “glory” of her impending fame includes the romance and terror of being a spy or an exile, but it is the mother who is judged as “indiscreet”: a truly Munrovian moment.