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Girl Meets Boy (Myths) (edition 2008)
by Ali Smith
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0676978754, Hardcover)Another internationally acclaimed writer contributes a fascinating, compelling reinterpretation of a myth that resonates deeply today.
Ligdus and Telethusa are having a child, but they cannot afford to have a girl. Ligdus informs Telethusa that she had better hope for a boy. While this decision makes them both sad, Telethusa “must/obey.” She prays to Isis, but births a girl and names her Iphis, a name that “suited male or female–/a neutral name.” She convinces everyone, including Ligdus, that Iphis is a boy.
Iphis matures and falls in love with another girl, Ianthe, and is engaged for marriage, yet s/he is ruled by the sexual norms of the time: “[P]ossessed by love so strange . . . no female wants/a female!” but “no learned art–can ever make of me/a boy.” She attempts to reconcile her love for Ianthe against the pressures of “nature.” The wedding day is near, Telethusa is desperate, and prays again to Isis. Iphis is transformed, looking like a boy.
Is Ovid suggesting that what we think is nature is attitude? Does Iphis grow a penis? Or does Iphis, adopting the characteristics of a boy, remain a girl married to a girl, undermining traditional values?
(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:58:45 -0400)
'Girl Meets Boy' is a story as old as time. But what happens when an old story meets brand new circumstances? Ali Smith's re-mix of Ovid's most joyful metamorphosis is a story about the kind of fluidity that can't be bottled or sold.
(summary from another edition)
Two editions of this book were published by Canongate Books.
An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.
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