Marilynne Robinson's first novel, Housekeeping (1980), treats generations of Foster women tending the family home in fictitious Fingerbone, Idaho. They contend with regular lunar floods, a lake that swallows a train full of people, and the alluring call of nature that unsettles staid domesticity. In this talk, Rev. Joseph Simmons, S.J., will discuss Robinson's deft treatment of the power of the natural world to enchant, confound, and ultimately overtake the family home. Simmons will also consider how Housekeeping, a Pulitzer Prize finalist, fits in with Robinson's broader interests in ecology, overlooked historical voices, and biblical literacy.
Michael Scott, director of the Future of the Humanities Project, will provide opening and closing remarks, and Kathryn Temple, a Future of the Humanities Project senior fellow, will moderate a Q&A session following the presentation.
This event is sponsored by the Future of the Humanities Project; the Georgetown Humanities Initiative; the Georgetown Master’s Program in the Engaged and Public Humanities; Campion Hall, Oxford; and the Las Casas Institute (Blackfriars Hall, Oxford). It is part of the one-year-long series: A Bent but Beautiful World: Literature, Art, and the Environment.