Margaret Atwood honored with Dayton Literary Peace Prize

Margaret Atwood’s sweeping frame of labor is being identified with a life-time success award that celebrates literature’s energy to foster peace, justice and figuring out

CINCINNATI — Margaret Atwood, whose sweeping frame of labor comprises “The Handmaid’s Story,” an outline of a nightmarish totalitarian long term for america, is that this 12 months’s winner of a life-time success award that celebrates literature’s energy to foster peace, social justice and world figuring out.

The Canadian author and instructor has earned the Richard C. Holbrooke Outstanding Success Award, officers of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize officers introduced Monday. The award is called for the past due U.S. diplomat who brokered the 1995 Bosnian peace accords reached within the Ohio town.

Atwood — a prolific author of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, essays, comedian books and, today, tweets — in recent times has drawn a brand new spherical of approval for her bestselling 1985 novel of a dystopian long term during which ladies are subjugated after an overthrow of the U.S. executive.

Some readers of “The Handmaid’s Story” noticed within the leaders of authoritarian Gilead similarities to the upward thrust of Republican Donald Trump to president within the election of 2016. The tv adaptation on Hulu starring Elisabeth Moss generated but extra observation, and ladies wearing pink cloaks and white bonnets, because the handmaids had been depicted within the guide and TV collection, have proven up at political demonstrations.

“You are no longer there but, or else you wouldn’t be chatting with me,” Atwood mentioned to a male Related Press reporter, giggling over the telephone. “You would almost definitely be in an isolation jail or one thing or lifeless. … How dare you communicate to a feminine individual over the telephone and write about them?

“… And if I had been a having a bet individual, which naturally I more or less am, I might wager on American orneriness and refusal to line up,” she added. “So I don’t suppose you’re going to get folks marching in lockstep simply. … You need to get it, however it could be arduous.”

Atwood additionally thinks persons are “alert to the risks” of undermining the U.S. charter.

“That’s what stands between you and an absolutist dictatorship,” she mentioned.

Sharon Rab, the founder and chairwoman of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize Basis, praised Atwood for widespread good fortune with writing that still educates folks about urgent social justice and environmental problems.

“Margaret Atwood continues to remind us that ‘It could possibly’t occur right here’ can’t be depended upon; anything else can occur anyplace given the suitable instances, and at the moment, with scorn for democratic establishments on the upward thrust, her classes are extra essential than ever,” Rab instructed The AP through e-mail.

Whilst no longer all books are conducive to peace and figuring out, Atwood mentioned, fiction can lend a hand folks “be informed what it’s to be an individual other from ourselves, in order that may reason you to have extra empathy with individuals who aren’t precisely such as you.”

The Toronto resident’s longtime spouse, novelist Graeme Gibson, died at age 85 a 12 months in the past this month. Atwood, 80, mentioned she attempted to stay herself busily distracted after the loss, doing guide promotions and different go back and forth till the pandemic grounded her in March. She has since signed hundreds of inserts and bookplates to make stronger impartial booksellers, and has given talks by the use of Zoom.

She considers herself “a realist, however at the positive facet, as a result of should you’re pessimistic, you don’t do anything else. … I feel it’s people who find themselves sensible however prone in opposition to optimism who in truth attempt to trade path.”

Atwood printed her first guide of poetry, “Double Persephone,” in 1961, and her different books have incorporated “Cat’s Eye” (1988), “Alias Grace” (1996), “The Blind Murderer” (2000), and “The MaddAddam Trilogy” (2003-2013). “The Testaments,” her 2019 sequel to “The Handmaid’s Story,” briefly joined her bestsellers.

The Dayton lifetime success award carries a $10,000 prize. Earlier winners come with Studs Terkel, Taylor Department, John Irving, Gloria Steinem and Elie Wiesel.

The awards collecting initially deliberate for October is being rescheduled for spring 2021 on account of pandemic precautions. Atwood can be joined through the 2020 winners of awards for fiction and nonfiction; finalists for the ones can be introduced subsequent month.


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