The Haunted Hand

By (author): Louise Dupré

Translated by: Donald Winkler

A woman has her cat euthanized, a decision that causes her to become aware of her ability to kill. She writes, hand haunted by history, and returns to the forgotten memory of the time when her ancestors were animals. By writing, she tries to understand the psyche and its obvious manifestations of cruelty, which she sees every day in the media: rapes, murders, bombings of civilians, indifference towards the powerless, humans and animals that are made to suffer without remorse. This book is a cry provoked by existential questions: how to deal with the wickedness in the world, how to see one’s own wickedness without sinking into despair. By writing, by openness to others, by compassion, she seems to be able to face life believing that, if she recognizes the presence of evil both in her and in the world, she will be able to respond by standing among the living.

AUTHOR

Donald Winkler

Donald Winkler was born in Winnipeg, graduated from the University of Manitoba, and did graduate study at the Yale School of Drama. From 1967 to 1995 he was a film director and writer at the National Film Board of Canada in Montreal, and since the 1980s, a translator of Quebec literature. In 1994, 2011, and 2013 he won the Governor General Award for French to English translation, and has been a finalist for the prize on three other occasions. His translation of Samuel Archibald’s short story collection, “Arvida,” was a finalist for the 2015 Giller Prize. He lives in Montreal, Quebec.

AUTHOR

Louise Dupré

Louise Dupré is a poet, writer, critic, and professor. She is the author of eight collections of poetry and several novels, including La memoria, which won the Prix de la Société des écrivains canadiens and the Prix Ringuet de l’Académie des lettres du Québec. She teaches literature and creative writing at the Université de Québec in Montreal.

Reviews

As the collection is framed by the speaker’s own complicity in world suffering by her decision to euthanize her cat, we must ask ourselves: what cries have we heard, in our lives or dreams, that we ignored? If one believes the origins of the poetic act to be rooted not just in aesthetics, but also moral courage, Dupré bravely leads us to that feared “damned spot,” to quote Lady Macbeth, that we cannot, in the hour of reckoning, erase.


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A woman has her cat euthanized, a decision that causes her to become aware of her ability to kill. She writes, hand haunted by history, and returns to the forgotten memory of the time when her ancestors were animals. By writing, she tries to understand the psyche and its obvious manifestations of cruelty, which she sees every day in the media: rapes, murders, bombings of civilians, indifference towards the powerless, humans and animals that are made to suffer without remorse. This book is a cry provoked by existential questions: how to deal with the wickedness in the world, how to see one’s own wickedness without sinking into despair. By writing, by openness to others, by compassion, she seems to be able to face life believing that, if she recognizes the presence of evil both in her and in the world, she will be able to respond by standing among the living.

Reader Reviews

Details

Dimensions:

104 Pages
8in * 5in * 0.25in
120gr

Published:

May 01, 2020

City of Publication:

Hamilton

Country of Publication:

CA

Publisher:

Guernica Editions

ISBN:

9781771835107

Book Subjects:

POETRY / Canadian

Featured In:

All Books

Language:

eng

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