What are 3 examples which can answer the question of "How will this novel change Canada?" in Margaret Atwood's novel The Year of the Flood? Please give the some quotes from the novel if it possible.

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coachingcorner | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

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Some Margaret Attwood quotations from 'The Year Of The Flood' and effects on society might be :

“What am I living for and what am I dying for are the same question.” ― Margaret Atwood, The Year of the Flood

“...we must be a beacon of hope, because if you tell people there's nothing they can do, they will do worse than nothing.” ― Margaret Atwood, The Year of the Flood

“All Creatures know that some must die That all the rest may take and eat; Sooner or later, all transform Their blood to wine, their flesh to meat. But Man alone seeks Vengefulness, And writes his abstract Laws on stone; For this false Justice he has made, He tortures limb and crushes bone. Is this the image of a god? My tooth for yours, your eye for mine? Oh, if Revenge did move the stars Instead of Love, they would not shine.” ― Margaret Atwood, The Year of the Flood

“Why can't I believe? she asked the darkness. Behind her eyelids she saw an animal. It was golden colour, with gentle green eyes and canine teeth, and curly wool instead of fur. It opened its mouth, but it did not speak. Instead, it yawned. It gazed at her. She gazed at it. "You are the effect of a carefully calibrated blend of plant toxins," she told it. Then she fell asleep.” ― Margaret Atwood, The Year of the Flood

In these quotations look for choices ( religion, genetic interference, crops, fuel, money) and think about the choices mankind is making - we can go forward, or we can go back. If we go forward, which direction will Canada travel in? (and where will it end up?) 

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coachingcorner's profile pic

coachingcorner | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

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Hopefully the potential changes to which you refer will be positive ones for Canada and the rest of the west and the world in general. After the 'boom and bust' cycle which negatively affected the economic well-being of many populations, attitudes to commerce, globalisation and materialism have already started to change. People are becoming more frugal, more realistic and more cautious in their spending, not wanting to replicate the financial gorging and toxic debt issues that led to recession in the west.

The setting for Margaret Attwood's novel 'The Year Of The Flood' is a mystery city, most likely in Canada set in the time frame of the future after some kind of apocalypse. Tyrannical corporations and genetic engineering have become predominant in the newly evolving society. Mankind has been decimated by plague, the only survivors being a few religious eco warriors  'God's Gardeners.' We, as readers, follow two of these people and observe their interaction with the cult and the unravelling of their stories after the disaster.

We do not have to wait for our own future to unfold to see the green shoots of these terrible events emerging in Canadian/Western society - the technology and negative cynical goals are already here, for example cyber hacking of big organisations such as Nasa or the nightmare of the haunting menace posed by cyber terrorism which feeds on greed for dangerous nuclear natural resources. This future could be stark as the rich squabble over the debt required to purchase oil, shale gas and plutonium while the poor starve as their cornfields are turned over to bio-diesel and bread costs more than metals. Materialism could be inevitable as basic staples become unaffordable except for those on the materialism bandwagon, who slash and burn the environment as they rampage across the Canadian plains, laying them to waste.

Canada's bread basket could become an industrial power-house, butterflies and bees could be wiped out and populations decimated. Hopefully, the novel has drawn attention to these possibilities and Canadian attitudes will change. People may become more environmentally aware and join eco groups, financing environmental protection at the same time. Consumers may become more aware of their insatiable appetites for material goods and the effect these have on enslaved workers and on Nature. They may wake up and realise that their own debt to greedy commercial global conglomerates is partly responsible for the imbalance and they may vote in a government which will change Canada for the better in all the latter ways.

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