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Douglas Coupland on ‘Girlfriend in a Coma’

The Story

If you slipped into a coma and woke up 18 years later, would you reinvent yourself? Or would the world around you have changed so much that it made you a different person? These are some of the questions posed by Douglas Coupland's 1998 novel Girlfriend in a Coma. Since writing Generation X in 1991, Coupland has become known as a pop culture specialist, but it's a label that diminishes his skill as a novelist. In this 1998 interview from CBC-TV's Hot Type, Coupland says he tries to look at the world from a vantage point of instant hindsight.

Medium: Television
Program: Hot Type
Broadcast Date: March 24, 1998
Guest(s): Douglas Coupland
Interviewer: Evan Solomon
Duration: 10:16

Did You know?

• Coupland would later reflect that Girlfriend in a Coma was his equivalent to Pablo Picasso's Blue Period. To read that book, he told CBC-TV's George Stroumboulopoulos in 2008, was to re-experience everything that happened just before writing it: he was getting bad advice, a tour of Germany had "crushed" him, and he had spent a long time recovering in bed before snapping out of it.

• As of 2010, Coupland has written 12 novels in English and a 13th mostly in Japanese. His 2009 work, Generation A, was nominated for the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize. 




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