“All I ever wanted was to keep them safe”: Geographies of Care in Comparative Canadian Fiction

  • Dominique Hetu University of Montreal


A comparative analysis of Catherine Mavrikakis’ Le ciel de Bay City and Ami McKay’s The Birth House shows how care practices and attitudes emerge in spatialized encounters and brings attention to how these representations are closely connected to the representations of lived space. Drawing on care ethics and space theory, this article interrogates how these two novels uncover, through human constructs and their spatialized relationships, different intersubjective strategies that lead to a certain level of comfort and livability, to the preservation, protection, and sometimes transformation of living spaces that affect and are affected by the presence and/or lack of care.

Author Biography

Dominique Hetu, University of Montreal
Dominique Hétu is a PhD candidate in the Département de littérature comparée at the Université de Montréal. She is writing a dissertation on geographies of care in contemporary North American fiction by women. Her research interests bring together feminist ethics, contemporary literature, women’s writing, and relational space. She has published in the United States, in Canada, and in Quebec.