Host Jian Ghomeshi of CBC Radio One’s Q has an astounding new interview with Margaret Atwood. Atwood’s latest book, In Other Worlds: SF And The Human Imagination, can be found in the “Literary Criticism” section of your local paperbook store.
Gomeshi talked to Atwood about the realistic novel, comics, Weird Tales and the “sluttish” reputation of SF.
One point in the interview left me confused and asking questions. Atwood claimed that “Conan the Barbarian is the literary descendant of Walt Whitman … and Henry James”.
I am floored.
What the fuck is she talking about?
Seriously, did she misspeak?
Did she mean to say that Robert E. Howard himself was their literary descendant?
Surely she didn’t mean the the character. Either way I don’t get it.
Or maybe she meant the stories themselves were somehow in the tradition of Walt Whitman and Henry James??? How could that be?
No matter how I look at it I don’t see how either Walt Whitman or Henry James ties into Howard. It just doesn’t make any kind of sense to me.
Does anybody know what the hell Atwood meant by that?
Seriously, I do not get it.
Will I have to buy her book to understand this thesis?
Have a listen |MP3|.
Podcast feed: http://www.cbc.ca/podcasting/includes/qpodcast.xml
Posted by Jesse Willis
P.S. CBC, please release Apocalypse Al. You can call it “scientific romance” or something else, just release it.