As the Author of this Country's Best-selling Novel, W.O. Mitchell presents an unusual challenge to those who consider Canadian popular culture a contradiction in terms. Magic Lies, an interdisciplinary collection of twenty original essays, celebrates the range of this versatile author whose writing bridges the alleged border between the serious art of the novel and the mass culture of radio and television. It is the first book to take a comprehensive look at the sixty-year career of this post-colonial writer who has transformed the role of the community story-teller into a national mythologizer.
Magic Lies is divided into three sections: the first examines Mitchell's fiction; the second, his writings for radio, television, and theatre; and the third is comprised of interviews with and personal recollections of Mitchell. The approaches of its contributors balance academic analyses with the personal insights of fiction writers, theatre directors, a television director, an actor, and a popular radio host and journalist. All of their essays invite further creative readings and critical dialogue in order to understand a writer whose sense of community and locality has affected a nationalliterary tradition.
Given the broad appeal of Mitchell's work and the accessible nature of this collection, Magic Lies will interest both general readers and university students and scholars in English, drama, broadcasting, Canadian studies, and popular culture.