Lugar y nacimiento: Wingham (Canada), 1931
- Alice Munro es considerada una de las mejores autoras en lengua inglesa que siguen en activo. A lo largo de su trayectoria ha recibido numerosos galardones, entre los que destaca el prestigioso Man Booker International Prize, que le fue otorgado en 2009 por “la gran contribución de su obra al panorama literario mundial”. En 2013 recibió el Premio Nobel de Literatura por “su maestría en el arte del relato”.
- Muchas de las historias cortas de Alice Munro están ambientadas en el condado de Huron, Ontario. El enfoque regional y su visión personal de la condición humana son dos de las características de su ficción breve.
- En sus obras más recientes un tema recurrente es el de la vejez. Los protagonistas de sus cuentos breves suelen ser personas ancianas que representan la complejidad de envejecer. Munro alude tanto a los aspectos positivos como a los negativos del proceso de envejecimiento. Por lo tanto, la escritora retrata la vejez desde un punto de vista realista que incluye las dos caras opuestas de los últimos años del ciclo vital.
- La identidad de los personajes ancianos evoluciona a lo largo de su proceso de envejecimiento y se ve fuertemente condicionada por los siguientes factores: la jubilación, el internamiento en centros geriátricos y el desarrollo de enfermedades cognitivas como la demencia.
Citas extraídas de la obra narrativa de Munro:
- Amor y sexualidad en la vejez:
“They had usually prepared supper together. One of them made the drinks and the other the fire, and they talked about his work […] and about whatever Fiona was reading and what they had been thinking during their close but separate day. This was their time of liveliest intimacy, though there was also, of course, the five or ten minutes of physical sweetness just after they got into bed– something that did not often end up in sex but reassured them that sex was not over yet” (“The Bear Came over the Mountain” de Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage: 284).
- Paso del tiempo y fragilidad en la vejez:
“Even though he’s just in from the cold, he’s white. Put a candle behind his face, it’d shine through as if he were wax or thin china” (“Pictures of the Ice” de Friend of my Youth: 154).
“This was Ralph Gillespie. If Rose had met him on the street she would not have recognized him, he would have been a stranger to her, but after she had looked at him for a moment he seemed quite unchanged to her, unchanged from himself at seventeen or fifteen, his gray hair which had been light brown still falling over his forehead, his face still pale and calm and rather large for his body, the same diffident, watchful, withholding look. But his body was thinner and his shoulders seemed to have shrunk together. He wore a short-sleeved sweater with a little collar and three ornamental buttons; it was light blue with beige and yellow stripes. This sweater seemed to Rose to speak of aging jauntiness, a kind of petrified adolescence. She noticed that his arms were old and skinny and that his hands shook so badly that he used both of them to raise the glass of beer to his mouth” (“Who Do You Think You Are?” de Who Do You Think You Are?: 207-208).
“-‘You can’t go thinking you are better than other people just because you can learn poems. Who do you think you are?’
This was not the first time in her life Rose had been asked who she thought she was; in fact the question had often struck her like a monotonous gong and she paid no attention to it.” (“Who Do You Think You Are?” de Who Do You Think You Are?: 200).
- Centros geriátricos
“Now I’m ready for to go,” Flo said.
“Out there,” said Flo, jerking her head. “Out to the whattayacallit.
“The Home,” said Rose. “You don’t have to go today.”
“They hired you to take me, now you get a move on and take me,”
“I’m not hired. I’m Rose. I’ll make you a cup of tea.”
“You can make it. I won’t drink it”. (“Spelling” de Who Do You Think You Are: 189).
She said to him, at suppertime on the day of the wandering-off at the supermarket, “You know what you’re going to have to do with me, don’t you? You’re going to have to put me in that place. Shallowlake?”
Grant said, “Meadowlake. We ‘re not at that stage yet.”
“Shallowlake, Shillylake,” she said, as if they were engaged in a playful competition. “Sillylake. Sillylake it is” (“The Bear Came Over the Mountain” de Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage: 181).
Comunicación presentada a congreso:
Gort Paniello, Marta. “Identity in Old Age: Meanings of Ageing through Alice Munro’s ‘In Sight of the Lake’”. Borders, Intersections and Identity in the Contemporary Short Story in English. Santiago de Compostela, 23-24 Mayo, 2019.
POR: Marta Gort-Paniello firstname.lastname@example.org