Alice Munro: A Double Life by Catherine Sheldrick Ross

By Catherine Sheldrick Ross

Canadian-born Alice Munro has confirmed herself as one of many world's best modern brief story-writers. because the booklet of her first assortment, Dance of the chuffed colors in 1968, she has tantalized a gradually increasing readership together with her skill to offer, "ordinary existence in order that apparently luminous, invested with one of those magic." In Alice Munro: A Double lifestyles, the 1st full-length biography of Munro, Ross charts the advance of Munro as a wife/mother and severe author, and her fight to stability the calls for of this "double life."

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9-10) In conventional depictions of women’s lives, at least until recently, women have husbands and children or they can be artists; they can’t have both love and art. Norma Shearer, in The Red Shoes, might want to dance and wear entrancing red ballet slippers and also be married to a handsome orchestra conductor, but she has to choose. Alice Laidlaw wanted both. Her subsequent career has been a balancing act of responding to these contradictory claims of art and of marriage and motherhood. …Between the woman who is ambitious and the woman who … is passive, who wants to be dominated, who wants to have someone between her and the world.

The wallpaper in the front rooms was palely splotched by a leaky chimney. The floors were of wide boards which my mother painted green or brown or yellow every spring; in the middle was a square of linoleum …”(135). When the leaves were off the trees, the view eastward included church spires and the square, brick tower of the Wingham town hall. The area behind the farmhouse is now filled with wrecked cars — the house has been sold, and the current owners have rented it to people with a wrecking business.

A Very Deceptive Life” In many interviews conducted over a span of decades, Munro has talked about her strategy of holding onto “the two women” by leading parallel and separate lives. Unlike Charlotte Muir, whose dark powers are known and feared, Alice Laidlaw prudently tried to keep her powers and ambitions to herself. In childhood, what did these powers consist of? A love of language and a sensuous appreciation for words, a watchful, observing, noticing nature, and a vivid memory for the details of how things looked, smelled, sounded, and felt.

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