Margaret Laurence's Epic Imagination

Margaret Laurence's Epic Imagination

by Paul Comeau


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Margaret Laurence instinctively turned to the epic mode to create archetypal narratives of loss, exile, and redemption. Drawing on the Bible, Dante, and Milton, Laurence absorbed the epic structure and populated it with the Manawaka world of Hagar Shipley, Rachel Cameron, Stacey MacAindra, and Morag Gunn. Paul Comeau traces the development of Margaret Laurence's voice from its tentative beginnings in her African fiction to its culmination in the Manawaka Cycle. According to Comeau, Laurence's ability to illustrate the epic dimension in her characters' strengths and weaknesses has ensured her a lasting place among great Canadian writers.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780888644510
Publisher: University of Alberta Press
Publication date: 01/28/2006
Series: CuRRents Series
Pages: 208
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Paul Comeau lives in Burnaby, British Columbia. He is currently the Department Head of English at Windermere Secondary School in Vancouver.

Table of Contents

Part 1Epic Beginnings
IThis Side Jordan: Epic Conflict3
IIThe Tomorrow-Tamer: Patterns of Exile17
Part 2The Comedy of the Soul
IIIThe Stone Angel: Hagar in Hell45
IVA Jest of God and The Fire-Dwellers: Purgatorial Progress71
VJason's Quest and A Bird in the House: Epic Dialogue97
VIThe Diviners: Heaven on Earth115
VIIEpic Epilogue139
Works Cited161

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