The Beggar Maid



I’ve just finished reading “The Beggar Maid” by Alice Munro. Like all Munro’s writing it is an insightful and well observed collection of short stories this time all revolving around the same character, so the final collection reads like a novel. I particularly enjoyed ‘Wild Swans’ which is strangely erotic, although the story doesn’t overtly mention any sexual act its choice of words when describing ordinairy things evokes a sensuousness that can’t be acheived by more lewd writing. It is a testament to Munro’s ability as a writer to portray this scene of rather mundane guilty pleasure as beautifully and subtley as she does.

I also particularly enjoyed her observations of class differences: which have nothing to do with anything as easily definable as money or material goods, but comes across more as an attitude. People from working class backgrounds are “not protected”, whereas people from priveliged backgrounds “…never had to defer or…

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