The Half-Lives of Pat Lowther

The Half-Lives of Pat Lowther

by Christine Wiesenthal


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The Half-Lives of Pat Lowther by Christine Wiesenthal

Since her untimely death in 1975, the life and work of the Vancouver poet Pat Lowther have often been referred to as 'the Lowther legacy.' In The Half-Lives of Pat Lowther, Christine Wiesenthal seeks to convey what that legacy actually entails.

Combining biography with an analysis of literary and cultural history, Wiesenthal examines the critical legacy of a writer whose remarkable life and poetry have remained overshadowed by her notorious death. Working within a new form of biography, which employs multiple narrative arcs - or 'half-lives' - that interpret Lowther's life and poetry within and across several interpretive frameworks, Wiesenthal retraces the influences on the public memory of the poet. She charts Lowther's complex creative evolution: from her modest beginnings as a high-school drop out and single mother, to her emergence as one of the most distinctive poetic voices of the seventies.

A wealth of previously uncollected and unpublished letters, notebook entries, court documents, interviews, and archival materials illuminate Pat Lowther's manifold achievements in her domestic, political, and intellectual lives. The Half-Lives of Pat Lowther is the premier work on this remarkable figure.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780802094803
Publisher: University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division
Publication date: 11/04/2006
Pages: 530
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.26(d)

About the Author

Christine Wiesenthal is a Professor in the Department of English and Film Studies at the University of Alberta.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Toward a Half-Life of Pat Lowther
I The Craft of Memory
1 Three September Twenty-Threes
2 Not about Poetry
3 Canonicity and the 'Cult of the Victim'
II Complicated Airflows in the House
4 'At, Rat, Cat, Sat, Pat'
5 5823 St George Street
6 A Difficult Flowering
7 That 'Spinning Female Thing'
8 It Happens Every Day
III Ready to Learn Politics
9 The First 'Red Flag'
10 The Local Left
11 The Age of the Bird
12 Longitudes, North
13 Longitudes, South
14 Welcome to the League
IV Philosophy's First Molecule
15 Infinite Mirror Trips
16 The Land Is What's Left
17 'History, and Context, and Continuity'

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