To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
Slow Emergencies: A Novel Paperback – January 8, 2002
Top 20 lists in Books
View the top 20 best sellers of all time, the most reviewed books of all time and some of our editors' favorite picks. Learn more
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Nancy Huston's writing comes alive when she's describing Lin's home life. The children, especially, are delicately observed. But although the author wants us to feel her heroine's overpowering need to dance, her writing on the subject is vague and pretentious, never letting us into the details of Lin's artistic process. In rehearsal, she and her partner are "welded together by the throbbing air." The dances themselves sound pretty awful: "It is about stone and sculpture, about failure leading to rage, then madness and finally to imprisonment." The kids, on the other hand, sound pretty terrific (one daughter insists that her mother is "as beautiful as Italy"). At such moments, it's difficult not to wonder whether Lin has put her eggs in the wrong basket. Still, in these postfeminist times, it's a daring choice to write with tenderness about a woman who abandons her babies for her art. --Claire Dederer --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
In Slow Emergencies, linguistic and structural sophistication is a canvas for the unfolding of timeless conflicts - between divine gifts and mortals, and between favoured mortals and society. Lin, the heroine of this book, does not choose. She is chosen. The novel presents a protagonist who, after much struggle to remain "normal" and to conform to the diktats of society, surrenders to her beckoning destiny. This is the thematic backbone of Slow Emergencies: we do not choose art - it chooses us. Fighting the honour of the gods is lethal. The only way to survive is to heed the calling. However, neither is there any quixotic notion of a blissful surrender into a joyous dance with the muses. Giving birth to Art (hence, all the conception and birth metaphors) is an agonizing process. The chosen ones are haunted, tormented with burning pain which drives them to the point of insanity, insists on claiming the body, reorganizes its cells and opens them up to the seeds of divine inspiration. Yes, Lin does make a choice, but not between career and family. She chooses life over death.
This book analyzes the effects of such a choice without apologizing for it. The society at large does not understand artists.Read more ›