What Margaret Atwood Has To Say About Fear, Power, & “The Bastards”

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Last night, hundreds of Hollywood’s most well-known, well-endowed, and well-loved personalities came together at LA’s Microsoft Theatre to celebrate television as we now know it. On our tablets, laptops, iPhones. Streaming, online, and mobile, available wherever we are.

But the event wasn’t all about the gowns, gossip, and glitterati. In an unprecedented victory, last night’s Emmy’s shattered the glass ceiling for many a silver screen minority. The LGBT community, the African American community, the South Asian community, and the new media (online) community all got their rightfully deserved recognition. And in the midst of it all, one name emerged most triumphant – Margaret Atwood.

If her name sounds familiar, it’s because it should. Her book, The Handmaid’s Tale not only went home with a whopping five wins, it also became the first series from a streaming service to bag the highly coveted Best Drama award. Not bad for a 77-year-old poet/novelist.

To celebrate her historic win and her lifelong literary dedication to supporting feminism through her work, we rounded up some of our other favourite Margaret Attwood quotes.

If you weren’t a fan before, this should change your mind.

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ON SPEAKING OUT

A voice is a human gift; it should be cherished and used, to utter fully human speech as possible. Powerlessness and silence go together.

ON FEAR

Heroes need monsters to establish their heroic credentials. You need something scary to overcome

ON RACISM

I hope that people will finally come to realize that there is only one ‘race’ – the human race – and that we are all members of it.

Canadian writer Margaret Atwood speaks during an interview at a hotel in Havana, Cuba, February 8, 2017. Picture taken on February 8, 2017. REUTERS/Alexandre Meneghini - RTSY5HP

ON SEXISM

We still think of a powerful man as a born leader and a powerful woman as an anomaly.

ON MORTALITY

Sooner or later, I hate to break it to you, you’re gonna die, so how do you fill in the space between here and there? It’s yours. Seize your space.

ON LOVE & LANGUAGE

The Eskimos had fifty-two names for snow because it was important to them: there ought to be as many for love.

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ON STORYTELLING

“[Everyone] ‘writes’ in a way; that is, each person has a ‘story’—a personal narrative—which is constantly being replayed, revised, taken apart and put together again. The significant points in this narrative change as a person ages—what may have been tragedy at 20 is seen as comedy or nostalgia at 40.”

ON POWER

A word after a word after a word is power

ON EDUCATION

I’ve learned quite a lot over the years by avoiding what I was supposed to be learning

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ON LOVE

Nobody dies from the lack of sex. It’s lack of love we die from.

ON LEGACY

Why is it we want so badly to memorialize ourselves? Even while we’re still alive. We wish to assert our existence, like dogs peeing on fire hydrants.

ON EMOTIONS

You can’t help what you feel, but you can help how you behave

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ON RESILIANCE

Don’t let the bastards grind you down

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