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Amplifying BIPOC and LGBQT+ Voices

The Stuff of Life
By (author): Lawrence Hill
Lawrence Hill


House of Anansi Press - Toronto



Product Form:


Form detail:

Paperback , Trade


General Trade
Sep 28, 2013
$19.95 CAD


8in x 5 x 0.85 in | 0.84 lb

Page Count:

384 pages
House of Anansi Press Inc
House of Anansi Press
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General
Globe and Mail Top 100 Book 2013, Commended
  • Short Description
Bestselling author Lawrence Hill offers an examination of the scientific and social history of blood, and the way that it unites and divides us today.

Selected for The Globe 100 Books in 2013.

With the 2013 CBC Massey Lectures, bestselling author Lawrence Hill offers a provocative examination of the scientific and social history of blood, and on the ways that it unites and divides us today.

Blood runs red through every person’s arteries and fulfills the same functions in every human being. The study of blood has advanced our understanding of biology and improved medical treatments, but its cultural and social representations have divided us perennially. Blood pulses through religion, literature, and the visual arts. Every time it pools or spills, we learn a little more about what brings human beings together and what pulls us apart. For centuries, perceptions of difference in our blood have separated people on the basis of gender, race, class, and nation. Ideas about blood purity have spawned rules about who gets to belong to a family or cultural group, who enjoys the rights of citizenship and nationality, what privileges one can expect to be granted or denied, whether you inherit poverty or the right to rule over the masses, what constitutes fair play in sport, and what defines a person’s identity.

Blood: The Stuff of Life is a bold meditation on blood as an historical and contemporary marker of identity, belonging, gender, race, class, citizenship, athletic superiority, and nationhood.

Lawrence Hill is an award-winning Canadian writer whose novel The Book of Negroes was a national bestseller. He lives in Hamilton, Ontario. Visit Lawrence Hill's website: http://www.lawrencehill.com/

Where Blood shines (glistens?) is in the many places where Hill exposes and explores the contradictions and liminal spaces of a topic that — whether we like it or not — unites us all. - Emily Donaldson, Toronto Star

The book is chock full of fascinating statistics, anecdotes and arguments about blood and ranges in topics...It's entertaining, shocking and informative; the lectures should be both challenging and engaging. - Tracy Sherlock, Vancouver Sun

...elegantly argued lectures. - Brian Bethune, Maclean's

...Hill is a wonderful storyteller, and it’s the stories – his own in particular – that absorb and resonate. - Carolyn Abraham, Globe and Mail

Transparent and compelling. The book is as enthralling as it is informative. The reasons for Hill's success as a writer are apparent throughout. - Publisher's Weekly

A natural choice for Massey lecturer - Ian McGillis, The Montreal Gazette

...a comprehensive and powerful social history of blood and its myriad implications for the ways we view ourselves. - Devyani Saltzman, The Province

The book is enlivened by Hill's personal and familial experiences with blood... he affirms the humanist and scientifically accurate description that we are all part of the unfolding diversity of the human family. Amen! - Brian Ostrow, Blog for the Bookstore

...Hill is a commanding storyteller... - Kamal Al-Solaylee, Quill & Quire

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