In Other Worlds: Book summary and reviews of In Other Worlds by Margaret Atwood

In Other Worlds

SF and the Human Imagination

By Margaret Atwood

In Other Worlds
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  • Published in USA  Oct 2011,
    272 pages.

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Book Summary

In Other Worlds: Science Fiction and the Human Imagination is Margaret Atwood's account of her rela­tionship with the literary form we have come to know as science fiction. This relationship has been lifelong, stretch­ing from her days as a child reader in the 1940s through her time as a graduate student at Harvard, where she explored the Victorian ancestors of the form, and continuing with her work as a writer and reviewer. This book brings together her three heretofore unpublished Ellmann Lectures of 2010 - "Flying Rabbits," which begins with Atwood's early rabbit superhero creations and goes on to speculate about masks, capes, weakling alter egos, and Things with Wings; "Burning Bushes," which follows her into Victorian other-lands and beyond; and "Dire Cartographies," which investi­gates utopias and dystopias. In Other Worlds also includes some of Atwood's key reviews and musings about the form, including her elucidation of the differences (as she sees them) between "science fiction" proper and "speculative fiction," as well as "sword and sorcery/fantasy" and "slip­stream fiction." For all readers who have loved The Handmaid's Tale, Oryx and Crake, and The Year of the Flood - not to mention Atwood's 100,000 plus Twitter fol­lowers - In Other Worlds is a must.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"This enjoyable volume, tellingly dedicated to Ursula K. Le Guin, reveals a writer with strong, often fascinating, if idiosyncratic opinions about genre SF." - Publishers Weekly

"Starred Review. A witty, astute collection of essays and lectures on science fiction... wholly satisfying, with plenty of insights for Atwood and sci-fi fans alike." - Kirkus Reviews

"Atwood archly and profoundly delves into her 'lifelong relationship' with science fiction in a collection of glimmering essays." - Booklist

"This amazing woman's voice, this fine writer's constant example, is extraordinary." - Boston Globe

"One of the most intelligent and talented writers to set herself the task of deciphering life in the late twentieth century." - Vogue

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Author Information

Margaret Atwood Author Biography

Margaret Atwood was born in 1939 in Ottawa, and grew up in northern Ontario and Quebec, and in Toronto. She received her undergraduate degree from Victoria College at the University of Toronto and her master's degree from Radcliffe College.

Atwood is the author of more than forty volumes of poetry, children's literature, fiction, and non-fiction, but is best known for her novels, which include The Edible Woman (1969), The Handmaid's Tale (1985), The Robber Bride (1994), Alias Grace (1996), and The Blind Assassin, which won the prestigious Booker Prize in 2000. Her newest novel, MaddAddam (2013), is the final volume in a three-book series that began with the Man-Booker prize-nominated Oryx and Crake (2003) and continued with The Year of the Flood (2009). The Tent (mini-...

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