Margaret Atwood’s Surfacing as a Critique of the Enlightenment Reason

Hossein Pirnajmuddin, Omid Amani

Abstract


Surfacing, a novel written by Margaret Atwood in 1972, portrays the domination of western civilization as a masculinist ideology over nature and woman in parallel. The novel is about the degeneration of the core ideas of the Enlightenment – rationalism and progress – into brute domination, colonization and the rift between nature and culture. This study attempts to demonstrate the centrality of this critique to the novel. Atwood scathingly criticizes the rampant consumerism and capitalism of the modern age embodied in the threat posed by American culture, or American mentality, to Canada and nature which runs parallel to the masculine rationality which wills to ‘submerge’ (as the central metaphor of ‘surfacing’ has it) the feminine and the natural. The paper also discusses a number of other related dualisms represented in the novel.
Key words: Margaret Atwood; Surfacing; The Enlightenment; reason; ecofeminism; nature; power


Keywords


Margaret Atwood; Surfacing; The Enlightenment; reason; ecofeminism; nature; power

References


Atwood, Margaret (1998). Surfacing. United States of America: Anchor Books.
Brink, André (1998). The Novel: Language and Narrative from Cervantes to Calvino. Cape Town: University of Cape Town Press.
Bouson, J. Brooks (1993). Brutal Choreographies: Oppositional Strategies and Narrative Designs in the Novels of Margaret Atwood. Massachusetts: University of Massachusetts Press.
Hay, Peter (2002). Main Currents in Western Environmental Thought. Indiana: Indiana University Press.
Özdemir, Erinç (2003). Power, Madness and Identity in Margaret Atwood’s Surfacing: A Feminist Reading. English Studies: A Journal of English Language and Literature, 84(November 2003), 57-79.
Plumwood, Val (2005). Environmental Culture: The Ecological Crisis of Reason. London: Routledge.
-(2003). Feminism and the Mastery of Nature. London: Routledge.
Rao, Eleonora (1993). Strategies for Identity: Fiction of Margaret Atwood. New York: Peter Lang Publishing.
Ridout, Alice (2011). Contemporary Women Writers Look Back: From Irony to Nostalgia. London: Continuum.
Roberts, Julian (2004). The Dialect of Enlightenment. Cambridge Companion to Critical Theory. Ed. Fred Rush. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Somacarrera, Pilar (2006). Power Politics: Power and Identity. Cambridge Companion To Margaret Atwood. Ed. Cora Ann Howells. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
Tolan, Fiona (2007). Margaret Atwood: Feminism and Fiction. Amsterdam: Rodopi.
Warren, Karen J. (1996). Ecological Feminist Philosophies. Indiana: Indiana University Press.
Wilson, Rose (2007). Theodor Adorno (Routledge Critical Thinkers). London: Routledge.
Wilson, Sharon Rose (1993). Margaret Atwood Fairly-Tale Sexual Politics. Toronto: ESW Press.




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968%2Fj.sll.1923156320110302.310

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


Reminder

If you have already registered in Journal A and plan to submit article(s) to Journal B, please click the CATEGORIES, or JOURNALS A-Z on the right side of the "HOME".


We only use three mailboxes as follows to deal with issues about paper acceptance, payment and submission of electronic versions of our journals to databases: caooc@hotmail.com; sll@cscanada.net; sll@cscanada.org

Copyright © 2010 Canadian Academy of Oriental and Occidental Culture
Address: 730, 77e AV, Laval, Quebec, H7V 4A8, Canada

Telephone: 1-514-558 6138
Http://www.cscanada.net
Http://www.cscanada.org
E-mail: office@cscanada.net; office@cscanada.org; caooc@hotmail.com