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Who Is Mary Sue?

Who Is Mary Sue?

Last 6 in stock
ISBN
9780571346615
Published
08/02/2018
9780571346615
Format
Paperback
Price
£10.99
Paperback
112

About the Book

WINNER OF THE MICHAEL MURPHY MEMORIAL PRIZE
POETRY BOOK SOCIETY CHOICE

In the language of fan fiction, a ‘Mary Sue’ is an idealised and implausibly flawless character: a female archetype that can infuriate audiences for its perceived narcissism.

Such is the setting for this brilliant and important debut by Sophie Collins. In a series of verse and prose collages, Who Is Mary Sue? exposes the presumptive politics behind writing and readership: the idea that men invent while women reflect; that a man writes of the world outside while a woman will turn to the interior.

Part poetry and part reportage, at once playful and sincere, these fictive–factive miniatures deploy original writing and extant quotation in a mode of pure invention. In so doing, they lift up and lay down a revealing sequence of masks and mirrors that disturb the reflection of authority.

A work of captivation and correction, this is a book that will resonate with anyone concerned with identity, shame, gender, trauma, composition and culture: everyone, in other words, who wishes to live openly and think fearlessly in the modern world.

Who Is Mary Sue? is a work for our times and a question for our age: it is a handbook for all those willing to reimagine prescriptive notions of identity and selfhood.

WINNER OF THE MICHAEL MURPHY MEMORIAL PRIZEPOETRY BOOK SOCIETY CHOICEIn the language of fan fiction, a ‘Mary Sue’ is an idealised and implausibly flawless character: a female archetype that can infuriate audiences for its perceived narcissism.Such is the setting for this brilliant and important debut by Sophie Collins. In a series of verse and prose collages, Who Is Mary Sue? exposes the presumptive politics behind writing and readership: the idea that men invent while women reflect; that a man writes of the world outside while a woman will turn to the interior.Part poetry and part reportage, at once playful and sincere, these fictive–factive miniatures deploy original writing and extant quotation in a mode of pure invention. In so doing, they lift up and lay down a revealing sequence of masks and mirrors that disturb the reflection of authority.A work of captivation and correction, this is a book that will resonate with anyone concerned with identity, shame, gender, trauma, composition and culture: everyone, in other words, who wishes to live openly and think fearlessly in the modern world. Who Is Mary Sue? is a work for our times and a question for our age: it is a handbook for all those willing to reimagine prescriptive notions of identity and selfhood.
  • Sophie Collins

    Sophie Collins grew up in Bergen, North Holland, and now lives in Edinburgh. She is co-editor of tender, an online arts quarterly, and editor of Currently & Emotion (Test Centre, 2016), an anthology of contemporary poetry translations. small white monkeys, a text on self-expression, self-help and shame, was published by Book Works in 2017 as part of a commissioned residency at Glasgow Women’s Library. Who Is Mary Sue? is her first poetry collection.

“‘An urgent interrogation of the cultural conditions that continue to suppress women’s voices … a much-needed work of stunning feminist complaint.’”
- Alexa Wink, Poetry Review
“Who Is Mary Sue? is a startlingly original text that requests a different mode of reading, one that encourages avoiding labels and easy conclusions. Readers will emerge more interrogative, more invested in the stakes of sexist, limited criticism, after finishing this corrective and captivating debut.”
- Jade Cuttle, Guardian