Alice Munro’s stories derive their power from that which is unspoken, misremembered or concealed. Over her long career, she has mined the ambiguities of memory and perception, as they are shaped by dreams, erotic fantasy, drink, dementia or self-deception. Those who laud or, alternatively, dismiss the realist aspects of the fiction overlook this pronounced engagement with liminal states of consciousness, which, in Munro’s work, undermines the possibility of a fixed, external reality, unconditioned by human perception. Focusing mostly on Munro's late work, I consider the role played by spectral and ghostly figures in evoking a liminal state of consciousness.
|Title of host publication||Liminality and the Short Story: Boundary Crossings in American, Canadian, and British Writing,|
|Editors||Jochen Achilles, Ina Bergmann|
|Place of Publication||Oxon.|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|
|Name||Routledge Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Literature|
Cox, A. (2015). '"Almost Like a Ghost": Spectral Figures in Alice Munro’s Short Fiction'. In J. Achilles, & I. Bergmann (Eds.), Liminality and the Short Story: Boundary Crossings in American, Canadian, and British Writing, (pp. 238-250). (Routledge Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Literature). Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315817040