Mavis Gallant’s “The Fenton Child”

2020-06-19T15:53:33-05:00

“‘Newborn, they’ve got these huge peckers,’ said Mr. Fenton. ‘I mean, really developed.’” When it comes to writing about Mavis Gallant’s short stories, I often want to begin with their first sentences. Sometimes there is such a swell of emotion at the story’s end, a marvelling at how entire

Mavis Gallant’s “The Fenton Child”2020-06-19T15:53:33-05:00

Dear Reader: What’s Told? Or, the Telling of It?

2020-05-15T15:05:12-05:00

In my recent reading, it’s been as much about how the story is told as it’s been about the story itself. This certainly isn’t a new idea—these examples span three decades—but sometimes the phenomenon is more prevalent in my stacks. Maybe you’ve read some of these, or maybe

Dear Reader: What’s Told? Or, the Telling of It?2020-05-15T15:05:12-05:00

Mavis Gallant’s “Mlle. Dias de Corta”

2020-06-01T19:46:20-05:00

When Robert’s mother observes Alda’s signature and recognizes the pride and secrecy in its long loops and closed As, I think about the handwriting course that Mme Brounet took in Dédé. But I also think of Mavis Gallant writing long-hand and the hours she spent studying her own cursive

Mavis Gallant’s “Mlle. Dias de Corta”2020-06-01T19:46:20-05:00

Mavis Gallant’s “The Sunday after Christmas” (1988)

2020-01-29T10:43:46-05:00

It seems to me that Mavis Gallant must have spent an inordinate amount of time on terraces. As places that seem associated with a view, this seems appropriate for a writer with a penchant for observation and acuity. But even while terraces seem related to looking outward – especially

Mavis Gallant’s “The Sunday after Christmas” (1988)2020-01-29T10:43:46-05:00

Mavis Gallant’s “A Question of Disposal”

2019-12-03T21:19:41-05:00

In other Mavis Gallant stories, we have met characters whose hold on life is more tenacious than expected. In “The Remission” (1979), for instance. Everyone has made plans with an exit in mind, but nothing goes as expected. And in “The End of the World” (1967), we have a

Mavis Gallant’s “A Question of Disposal”2019-12-03T21:19:41-05:00
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