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On November 28 at the Canada House on Trafalgar Square, Margaret Atwood was named a Companion of Literature and inaugurated as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. No more than ten writers are Companions at any one time, and it is considered the RSL’s highest honor.
Fellows sign into a great roll book using either Byron’s pen or Dickens’s quill; Atwood used Dickens’ quill. (Though she tested both out first in the editor’s notebook).
A woman in the audience asked about the future of gender relations; Atwood responded with, “Here’s a shocking piece of news for you: not all women are nice.” But, Fergusson reminds us, Atwood has a warmer side, too. “Speaking about her appetite for new technology—Twitter, Wattpad, Byliner—she revealed an overwhelming desire to ‘enable literature’ among people without regular access to bookshops, or libraries.”
Margaret Atwood has been the leader in her field and her art for decades, and now she’s ushering in new writing and publishing technologies. Atwood has embraced social media (and even defended the Internet by saying it encouraged literacy) by connecting with readers and spreading the word about issues important to her and her fans, such as possible library cuts in Toronto, via Twitter. Atwood is now working with Wattpad, an online writing community and has co-founded Fanado, a service that provides a “distinct combination of face-to-face online meetings with legally verifiable signatures.”
Writing for the Guardian, Atwood responds to naysayers and those who simply wonder why she doesn’t just relax a bit:
Maybe my dates with Wattpad are a bit undignified. But at my age you can afford to be undignified. You’re free to explore, and to guinea-pig yourself, and to stretch the boundaries.
Artist Jane Eccles’s new exhibit opens February 26 and runs until April 10 at the Whitby Station Gallery in Whitby, Ontario. Eccles’s exhibit is called “Overlap,” and includes a painting of a dress donated by Margaret Atwood, painted by Eccles. For more information, see the Station Gallery’s website.
Margaret Atwood will soon publish her seventh children’s book, Wandering Wenda and Widow Wallop’s Wunderground Washery.
The Royal Society of Literature announces that Margaret Atwood will be delivering a lecture in London on November 3, 2010. For more information, please visit the Royal Society of Literature website.
See the full story at The Vancouver Sun website!
UC DENVER’S DEPARTMENT OF THEATRE, FILM & VIDEO PRODUCTION ANNOUNCES ITS NATIONAL PREMIERE PRODUCTION OF WILLIAM LEIREN’S STAGE ADAPTATION OF THE NOVEL BY MARGARET ATWOOD, THE HANDMAID’S TALE.
DENVER (February 11, 2010)— The University of Colorado Denver’s Department of Theatre, Film & Video Production is pleased to present its national premiere production of William Leiren’s stage adaptation of the novel by Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale on February 25-27 & March 3-6, 2010.
Imagine a society where ultra-conservative religious fanatics control everything and keep everyone under constant surveillance—even those responsible for conducting the surveillance. Imagine a time when women have lost all rights, can’t even have their own money, and are valued only for their ability to do housework and get pregnant. Imagine a place where living in fear and suspicion is the only thing common to everyone.
And now imagine this is not a foreign society unfamiliar to us, not another time but now, not a place halfway around the globe. Imagine all of this in your house, your neighborhood, your town. Award-winning author Margaret Atwood imagined all of that and created a stunning and compelling picture for us in her 1985 novel The Handmaid’s Tale. And now, for the first time, this brilliant work has been adapted for the stage. Denver playwright William Leiren, with Ms. Atwood’s blessing, has dramatized this story and UC Denver’s TFVP Dept. is presenting an exciting and hard-hitting production in a transformed Eugenia Rawls Theatre from February 25-27 and March 3-6. Featuring a multi-faceted cast of 26 students, faculty, and alumni, as well as dynamic and innovative design elements, this promises to be one of the high points of the theatre season.
Celebrating its 10th Anniversary in 2008-09, the College of Arts & Media (CAM) at the University of Colorado Denver embraces the influence of modern trends on traditional art forms. Located on UC Denver’s downtown campus, CAM is at the heart of Denver’s thriving, dynamic arts community. The college encourages its students to discover new artistic forms, explore creative applications of technology, and prepare themselves for careers in the current and emergent culture industry. CAM is one of 13 schools and colleges at UC Denver. The University offers more than 100 degrees and serves more than 28,000 students in Metro Denver and online. For additional news and information, please visit the UC Denver newsroom.
Centaur Records is releasing a CD by Eileen Strempel (soprano) of Syracuse University and Sylvie Beaudette (piano) of the University of Rochester. The duo recorded musical settings of the poems of Margaret Atwood, as part of the Atwood Project and to celebrate Women’s History Month. Please click here for more details.