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House of Anansi Press

Payback

Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth CBC Massey Lectures

Written by Margaret Atwood

Published March 15, 2007 | ISBN 9780887848728
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economic History

Cover of Payback

Regular price $16.95 CAD

240 pages
Digital Format

Also Available in Print

About this book

Payback

Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth

CBC Massey Lectures

Margaret Atwood

Available in a new edition and with an introduction by Margaret Atwood, Payback delivers a surprising look at the topic of “debt” — a subject that continues to be timely.

Legendary novelist, poet, and essayist Margaret Atwood delivers a surprising look at the topic of “debt” — a subject that continues to be timely during this current period of economic upheaval. In her intelligent and imaginative approach to the subject, Atwood proposes that “debt” is like air — something we take for granted and never think about until things go wrong.

This is not a book about practical debt management or high finance, although it does touch upon those subjects. Rather, it goes far deeper into an investigation of debt as a very old, very central motif in religion, literature, and the structure of human societies. By looking at how debt has informed our thinking from preliterate times to the present day, through the stories we tell to our concepts of “revenge” and “sin” to the way we structure our social relationships, Atwood shows that this idea of what we owe — in other words, “debt” — is possibly built into the human imagination as one of its most dynamic metaphors. In the final section, Atwood touches upon not only our current global financial situation, but also the concept of our “debt to nature” and how our ideas of ownership and debt must be changed if we are to find a new way to interact with our natural environment.

About the Author

Margaret Atwood

Margaret Atwood is one of the world's preeminent writers - winner of the Booker Prize, the Scotiabank Giller Prize, and the Governor General's Literary Award. She lives in Toronto. Visit Margaret Atwood's website: http://www.margaretatwood.ca/ Check out Margaret Atwood's blog: http://marg09.wordpress.com/ Follow Margaret Atwood on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/margaretatwood

Awards and Praise
"Ms. Atwood is a witty and astute writer of broad sympathy and wide-ranging curiosity, and the prose of the book, at once commonsensical and counterintuitive, bristles with insight and implication."
  • Short-listed National Business Book Award, 2009
  • Short-listed OLA Evergreen Award (Forest of Reading), 2008
  • Commended Globe and Mail Top 100 Best Books of the Year, 2008
  • Runner-up Axiom Business Book Awards - Business Ethics, 2008