Lisa Ray & Yanic Truesdale on the double standards experienced by male and female artists
For Day Two of Canada Reads 2019, the debates were a bit more critical and intense as the contending panellists made cases for why their book should be the one all Canadians should read.
Over the first two days of debate, panellists Chuck Comeau and Joe Zee have said it was hard to empathize with the main character of Suzanne because she made an unthinkable choice in abandoning her young children to pursue her dream of becoming an artist.
"Yes, we are talking about a woman who has made some unpopular, unconventional and even morally wrong decisions. But she was trying to go for it as an artist — how many men have done it and not actually paid the consequence? If you look at all the great artists, they are tortured. They have tortured lives. How many women did Picasso leave? How many kids did he have and then leave? It just might move you to see things different — [away] from seeing it from a patriarchal point of view," said Ray.
"Suzanne's husband left for New York and that's one of the reasons why she left her kids. Because she was all by herself and couldn't take care of those kids. She didn't have a job, didn't have money, was left alone in a house. He would just show up for a day, everything was broken in the house and they had no money. Then he would go back again. She was like, 'I can't do this,'" said Truesdale.