Skip to Main Content

Michaud - April2021

Margaret Atwood - "Surfacing"

The primary source for this paper will be Surfacing by Margaret Atwood, but you must also use 3-4 outside sources to make an argument about one of the topics listed below.


  • One of the most peculiar aspects of the novel is the speaker’s struggle with mental illness and trauma. How does current research on these topics support, complicate, or refute this aspect of Atwood’s novel?  
  • Gender and gender performance make up much of this novel. How does the novel support, complicate, or refute contemporary discourse around these topics?  
  • One of the more subtle ideas in the novel is that of nationalism, defined as an obsessive identification with one’s own country to the exclusion of all other people or “outsiders.” How does the novel support, complicate, or refute these ideas as they pertain to the United States today?  


© , Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

Rutgers is an equal access/equal opportunity institution. Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to direct suggestions, comments, or complaints concerning any accessibility issues with Rutgers websites to or complete the Report Accessibility Barrier / Provide Feedback form.