Embodying the Global Metropolis: Tessa McWatt's This Body and Out of My Skin

Caroline Rosenthal

Abstract


This essay looks at two novels by Tessa McWatt, at her first novel Out of My Skin (1998), set in Montreal, and at one of her later novels This Body (2004), set in London, Toronto, and Guiana. Both novels address issues of origin and belonging, of nationhood, and of the global metropolis, and in both novels the female protagonists change urban space in practices which bring the knowledge, habits, and stories of other places into the city. As the novels' titles already indicate, these practices have a distinctly corporeal component to them as McWatt’s protagonists experience their losses and migratory displacements through their bodies and try to inscribe their difference into the space of the city. Daphne in Out of My Skin and Victoria in This Body counteract their feelings of disembodiment and displacement in embodied practices. This essay focuses on walking and cooking as two quotidian practices which physically engage us in understanding the world and which defy the Western body/mind split.

 


Keywords


gloabl metropolis, space and gender, embodied practices, walking, cooking, flanerie

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.33776/candb.v4i1.3013

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ISSN: 2254-1179
Entidad editora: Universidad de Huelva. Servicio de Publicaciones
Licencia de usoCreative Commons 4.0