Margaret Atwood, World-Famous but Yet to Be Discovered by Many Slovene Readers
Margaret Atwood is the only Canadian author whose 80th birthday in 2019 was celebrated by the global academic community. This is not surprising, as she is the most famous Canadian writer, popular also outside literary circles. On this occasion, Slovene Canadianists organized a literary event at the Maribor University Library, which presented an outline of Atwood’s oeuvre and a selection of translated poems and excerpts of prose texts; some of these were translated especially for the event. Of Atwood’s rich and varied oeuvre, only eight novels, a few short fiction pieces and some thirty poems have been translated into Slovene. This article thus aims at presenting those aspects of Atwood’s work which are less know to Slovene readers. It is no secret that Atwood is often labelled a feminist writer, mostly on account of The Handmaid’s Tale and the TV series based on the novel. However, many Slovene readers may not know that she also writes poetry, short fiction, non-fiction and children’s literature, that she is a committed environmentalist, and that she discussed the problem of “Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth” in a prestigious lecture series. There are not many authors who master as many genres as Atwood and who are so well-received by readers and critics alike. The latter is true of Atwood also in Slovenia, and we can only hope that Slovene publishers will make more of Atwood’s work available to Slovene readers. All the more so since Atwood has no plans to end her career: just before her 80th birthday she was on a tour in Europe promoting her latest novel, The Testaments, and she would have continued touring in 2020 were it not for the COVID pandemic.
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