Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Peggy's at it again

Socking it to Stephen Harper. You know, I hate Harper and his party; more even than I hate the Liberals, whom I hate in turn more than the NDP, who are slightly less pathetic than the Greens. But Atwood's really on the wrong track here. Why the hell is she trying to convince a populist neo-liberal with a minority government that he should value the arts? Wouldn't that just make him more electable? Maybe Peggy wants Steve-o to have another term--with a majority. Maybe a better approach would be to criticise him for policy decisions more Canadians care about--and that are more important--like keeping Canadian troops in Afghanistan, for instance.

There's a tempest brewing over in the Bookninja teapot over this. People shouldn't be surprised that Atwood's using economics arguments to defend arts funding. She's been in the business of sales and promotion ever since her catalogue--pardon me, her seminal work of literary criticism--of crummy Canadian books, Survival, first came out in '72. Maybe Atwood's making fiscal arguments because she has to-date produced no great art, so the profitability of it is all she has to fall back on. Just a thought. It's something my mother-in-law suggested to me the other day and, no surprise, John Metcalf agrees that Atwood's not one for the ages. I haven't read enough Atwood to say this with great confidence, but what I have read hasn't exactly set my heart and mind alight. As John says in his piece, I usually feel she disrespects her readers, always sticking her sharp authorial nose in, her nose like a fish-hook....

No comments: