To Join, to Fit, and to Make

The Creative Craft of Margaret Atwood's Fiction

by Christina Ljungberg Stuecklin (Author)
©1999 Thesis 202 Pages


«...craft and crafty rub shoulders; and... the words artifice, artifact, articulation and art all come from the same ancient root, a word meaning to join, to fit, and to make.» This quotation, from a review Margaret Atwood once wrote, fits her own literary craftsmanship. Drawing on research into Atwood's unpublished drafts and typescripts and on interviews, To Join, to Fit, and to Make investigates how Atwood plays with the relationship between form and meaning, and the extent to which her narrative designs reflect the themes of her fiction. The author demonstrates how Atwood lets the very construction of her narratives expose the ideological and «constructed» character of all narrative, whether of fact or fiction. Primarily focusing on two mature works, Cat's Eye and The Robber Bride, this study also explores the interconnectedness of all of Atwood's work, throughout which certain literary myths and themes reappear in different guises. Thus, the analysis of Cat's Eye, which centres on the dramatic quality of autobiography, traces the key issues of the novel back to the very beginning of Atwood's writing. In The Robber Bride, the author discusses the function of the intricate mirroring and complex layering of the novel, and demonstrates how Atwood uses these basically gothic conventions to present new and challenging alternatives of vision.


ISBN (Softcover)
form meaning themes myths autobiography
Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt/M., New York, Wien, 1999. 202 pp., 3 ill., 2 tab.

Biographical notes

Christina Ljungberg Stuecklin (Author)

The Author: Christina Ljungberg studied first at Lund University and later at the University of Zurich where she received her Ph.D. in 1998. She has worked in Cultural Programming with Swedish and Canadian Television and has taught introductory courses in English Literature at the Department of English at the University of Zurich.


Title: To Join, to Fit, and to Make