Abstract

To cross the carefully mediated border between the United States and Canada is to become unsettled. As a woman who has lived long-term stints in both countries, contemporary writer Annie Proulx has closely experienced this physical and emotional dislocation. In interviews, she has mentioned feeling rootless, as though a “perpetual outsider” (Lafreniere, 2009). Perhaps engendered by the lingering effect concomitant to border crossing, this rootlessness is represented in her work by transient characters and deteriorating homes. Like Proulx, her fictional characters are outsiders, an illustration of the liminality contracted by border crossing. Their dislocation serves to dismantle myths of the home and home life and to disrupt the historically established gender binary. This paper investigates how Proulx’s background as a border crosser allows her the insight to write subtly yet truthfully of being unsettled so that we may read a demystification of domesticity.

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Additional Information

ISSN
2161-427X
Print ISSN
1524-8429
Pages
pp. 96-111
Launched on MUSE
2016-03-02
Open Access
No
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