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Inside Out: Reflections on a Life So Far Evelyn Lau

Inside Out: Reflections on a Life So Far

Evelyn Lau

Published
ISBN : 9780385259286
Hardcover
256 pages
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 About the Book 

Inside Out is Evelyn Laus distinctively provocative reflection on her life at the ripe old age of 30. And a ripe life it has been. Lau hit the Canadian Lit scene running in 1989 with Runaway: Diary of a Street Kid. She hasnt stopped since. LauMoreInside Out is Evelyn Laus distinctively provocative reflection on her life at the ripe old age of 30. And a ripe life it has been. Lau hit the Canadian Lit scene running in 1989 with Runaway: Diary of a Street Kid. She hasnt stopped since. Lau followed up that best-seller with the short-story collections Fresh Girls and Choose Me, a novel, Other Women, and poetry, Oedipal Dreams. Inside Out is a series of personal essays that plunder Laus experiences with bulimia, depression, drug addiction, and a libel lawsuit. She examines her relationship with her overly critical mother and adored, but ineffectual father, which eventually drove her from home into a brutalizing existence on the streets of Vancouver. She describes the years she spent as a prostitute--the risks that occupation entailed and, ironically, the comfort it offered in its ritualized behaviors: It was a way of cutting off feeling, of transforming into another person, the cold person I wanted to be. Sometimes I felt so little it vaguely worried me, at the same time as it thrilled me--I felt like a field covered in snow, without a footprint or a living creature for as far as the eye could see. All the pain glittered and then it dissolved. The centrepiece is the anatomization of a widely publicized lawsuit launched by her much older former lover, W.P. Kinsella, author of Shoeless Joe, after she published an article about their affair. It is her reconnaissance of the variegated terrain of desire--for the body, for love, for a home, for emotional vulnerability, for a father, to write--that ties these essays together. Lau writes coolly on some rather burning topics. Despite being a paragon of detachment, she cunningly manages to lure the reader into the raw place at the core of these soul-destroying experiences. Through it all, she presents an impassioned defence of the writers right, in the execution of her art, to expose and bleed the permeable boundary between the past and present, the public and the intimate, for which the body is the concrete form. Others may lay claim to it as an object of critique or desire, while simultaneously it serves as the dwelling place for the observing (even retaliatory) ego. --Diana Kuprel