Friday, November 13, 2009

Art & Culture: My Beloved Wager: Essays from a Writing Practice by Erin Moure

“Writing is always and forever a social practice. The varying discourses in a society either shore it up or challenge it. And discourse isn’t something we walk away from when we set down our pen.”

My Beloved Wager: Essays from a Writing Practice (NeWest Press) is like an intellectual dance through Erin Moure’s three decade (thus far) career as a writer and translator. It’s not always an easy dance. “The framework,” she writes at one point, “can we avoid it? Can we speak outside a framework? A guide or friend? A restraint on vision? Can we ignore it? Can we say ‘pure sound’? ‘I am a woman is full of consequences’ … for we are part of a representational system, a system of behavioural laws, of social conditions that have privileged the (male) gaze.”

Not well known even in her native Canada, Moure is, however, deeply respected and very well published. Her thoughts on the writing life are complicated and even -- sometimes -- a little angry but it’s an interesting journey through a well-lived creative life.



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