The Edible Woman Essay - Suggested Essay Topics

Margaret Atwood

Suggested Essay Topics

Chapters 1-4
1. Marian is concerned about the direction her life will take if she remains employed at Seymour Surveys. Discuss her reaction to this concern.

2. In this section of the novel, Marian mentions and describes several of the women who work in her office. How do they relate to Marian’s present situation? Discuss.

Chapters 5-8
1. Marian opposes Ainsley’s decision to have a child. Why? Discuss the differences between their attitudes towards men and marriage.

2. Duncan does not allow himself to be “adjusted” the way Marian does. Is this statement true? Depending on your answer, discuss his importance in the novel.

Chapters 9-12
1. Marian finds lots to think about while she is hidden under Len’s bed. Why is she there? Why does she run away again? Why does she then allow Peter to drive her home? Discuss Marian’s behaviour in this section of the novel.

2. Discuss the significance of Peter’s use of the word “nonsense.”

3. What is so important about a girdle ad seen on a city bus?

Chapters 13-16
1. Marian thinks of each day between now and her wedding as “a landmark to be passed on the shore.” What is she waiting for? What does she expect will happen after she is married?

2. Duncan tells Marian that she is merely a substitute for his visits to the laundromat....

(The entire section is 539 words.)