Books & Other
Books & Other
Roseway Publishing, 2017
Nominated for the 2018 Fiddlehead Book Prize, New Brunswick Canada
“Kathy Mac sees inside language-as-propaganda, identifying all the twists and turns that facts suffer as they become half-truths or false justifications for evils, She knows and shows that the rhetoric of the War on Terror enacts a War on Truth. Accept no substitutes for her truth-telling, which is liberating.” — George Elliott Clarke
Human Misunderstanding contains three long poems. “Omar Khadr Is Not Harry Potter,” compares a fictional child soldier (hero) with a real child soldier (victim). “Human Misunderstanding: Theory, Speculation, Practice,” places eighteenth century philosophy beside one person’s late-night search for another in downtown Halifax, Canada. “A Case, E Case,” interleaves translated verses of Marie de France’s Middle English werewolf lai “Bisclavret” between verses about two sexual assault cases involving marginalized people as both defendants and prosecution. It ain’t for the faint of heart.
“It is an unusual pleasure to encounter writing which recognizes, as does Kathy Mac’s wonderful new book Human Misunderstanding, that poetic form must be meaningfully related to content and can affect content.” — M Travis Lane, Fiddlehead #275
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PAin, Porn and Complicity: Women Heroes from Pygmalion to Twilight
Five essays, published under Mac’s academic name, Kathleen McConnell, by Wolsak & Wynn, 2012
“Using sharp wit and brilliant analysis, McConnell presents an examination of popular texts and shows us how - like the unnamed statue in Ovid's poem - the female characters were sculpted by their creators, and their audiences.” - Nikki Stafford
Drawing on a large body of research -- from chaos theory to Freud -- poet and scholar Kathleen McConnell McConnell unravels some cultural threads that bind the way women protagonists are characterized in popular culture. This careful, and at times wry, examination doesn’t just consider why authors and audiences prefer female statues; it also discusses the effect of those characterizations on the culture that consumes them.
“What if Alexander Pope’s Rape of the Lock had been filmed by Steven Spielberg? What if Buffy the Vampire Slayer had gone to Columbine High? What if Leopold von Sacher-Masoch had been the dramaturge for Catwoman? Kathleen McConnell’s provocative thesis is that each of these scenarios has indeed come to pass, and what they have produced is a resilient and telling popular archive of the Pygmalion story. In this audacious and (sometimes literally) poetic collection of essays, McConnell shows us how the Pygmalion and Galatea story continually comes back to life from its stony sediments and animates the most popular of our guilty pleasures. This is a book sure to transform us.” -- Steven Bruhm, Gothic Bodies: The Politics of Pain in Romantic Fiction and Reflecting Narcissus: A Queer Aesthetic
The HundeFraulein Papers
Roseway Publishing, 2009
“Like all good elegies the reader is left touched and unsettled. The Hundefräulein Papers is not a trip down memory lane, hagiography, celebrity portrait or self-justifying rumination. It is, rather, an exquisite evocation of a time and a relationship whose mystery is being reverently and rigorously pursued.” – Michael Higgins, New Brunswick Telegraph Journal, Jan 30 2010
Hunde/fräulein: Dog/nanny. For five and a half years (1995-2001) Kathy Mac lived in Sambro Head, NS, looking after anywhere from four to twelve English Setters. The post entailed maintaining the ocean-side doghouse and looking after the many, varied houseguests of the hundemutter – ocean activist Elisabeth Mann Borgese, youngest daughter of Thomas Mann. These poems take their tone from the days and dogs that inspired them – by turns extravagant, intense, celebratory, wistful.
“This elegy is generically and tonally diverse, which makes for engaging reading, and is truer to life than an entirely lofty and lugubrious dirge would be.” – Jesse Patrick Ferguson, ARC Magazine