Monday, January 23, 2006
a pleasant surprise
I really have to thank Dani for enticing me to read this book. One I would definitely not have picked up on my own but her reviewreally intrigued me in a twofold kind of way.
First, Margaret Atwood. That name alone brought me back to my pre-university years in college. I was a science student and it was mandatory for us to take English and Humanities. I despised those courses. Science courses were neat and organized, factual, black and white. These courses were filled with shades of grey and were difficult and brought my overall average down :( One of those courses was titled "Women in Canadian Literature" and given by this b*tchy radical feminist. Of course we read Margaret Atwood, Silvia Plath and the like. Now this was back in 1978 so Atwood's work didn't have the scope it now has. We read and agonized over The Edible Woman, Surfacing and Lady Oracle. I hated writing book reports. Give me a lab report or calculus problem and I would have been happier.
Secondly, the Odyssey. At the same time as I was struggling with Margaret Atwood I met my own Greek God and ended up marrying him and his whole Greek culture. He introduced me to the Iliad and the Odyssey, greek Mythology, greek archaelogical sites, ancient greek history. Our pursuit of knowledge in this field is ongoing.
So this combination of Margaret Atwood (yikes) and the Odyssey (yeah) prooved to be a pleasant surprise. An easy read and something fun and totally different. An old story retold from a different point of view, a woman's point of view. It also made me realize how now, in my older and much wiser years, I've come to appreciate all those English and Humanities courses I had to take and how they've thought me so much. Wish I had known that more then.
And as I was reading this book I kept imagining how young students will be reading it and analyzing it and cursing it. Made me smile :)