Quilt stories

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University Press of Kentucky, Mar 1, 1994 - Fiction - 289 pages
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Quilting was one of the few forms of creative expression open to past generations of women. Within the acceptable confines of making something "useful, " these women stitched rather than penned their stories. Other artistic avenues have opened, but the writers gathered in this unique collection still claim kinship with their quilting sisters by the use of quilts in their writing. Featuring works of Bobbie Ann Mason, Joyce Carol Oates, Alice Walker, Adrienne Rich, Alice MacGowan, and many others, Quilt Stories is a colorful literary album quilt composed of the unique blocks created and signed by the writers. More than twenty-five stories, poems, and plays featuring the making of quilts - written from 1845 to the present, mainly by American women - document an important pattern in women's literary history. Five thematic sections explore quilts as expressions of remembrance and meaning (Memory Blocks), of community and courtship (Double Wedding Ring), of struggle and change (Radical Rose), of mystery and murder (Wheel of Mystery), and of age and wisdom (Old Maid's Ramble). In her introduction, Cecilia Macheski notes that these stories encourage us "to see women's literary history as a giant timeless quilting bee, where the writers gather around a frame and trade stories, gossip, and love." Renouncing the "competitiveness of the patriarchal world, " women writers have, in the imagery of the quilt, instead chosen "a model of cooperative and supportive creativity."

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The Patchwork Quilt Annette pseud

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About the author (1994)

Marian Arkin (Ph.D., New York University) is professor of English at LaGuardia Community College where she is also director of the Writing Center and co-director of the Writing Across the Curriculum program. She has written and co-edited books on tutoring and literature, and she is the managing editor of "Antipodes magazine.

Cecilia Macheski (Ph.D., City University of New York) is a professor of English and former director of the Writing Program at LaGuardia Community College. She has held three Fulbright Senior Scholar grants and has edited and co-edited books on literature by and about women.

Both Marian Arkin and Cecilia Macheski have each taught writing courses for thirty years.