Bodily Harm (novel)

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For other uses, see Bodily Harm (disambiguation).
Bodily Harm
First edition cover
Author Margaret Atwood
Country Canada
Language English
Publisher McClelland & Stewart
Publication date
Media type Print (Hardcover, Paperback)
ISBN 0-7704-2256-X (first edition)
OCLC 257154527
Preceded by Life Before Man
Followed by The Handmaid's Tale

Bodily Harm is a novel by Margaret Atwood. It was first published by McClelland and Stewart in 1981.

Plot introduction[edit]

The novel's protagonist Rennie Wilford is a travel reporter. After surviving breast cancer, she vacations on the fictional Caribbean island St. Antoine. The island, however, is on the brink of revolution. R ennie tries to stay away from politics, but is drawn into events through her romance with Paul, a key player in the uprising, and ends up in a survival struggle.


A major theme of Bodily Harm is power.

As in many of the heroines of Atwood's novels, Rennie is addicted to negative relationships. She feels "hooked like a junkie" to her relationship with Jake, and becomes unable to distinguish between sadomasochism and genuine aggression.[1]


  1. ^ Howells, Coral Ann (2006). The Cambridge Companion to Margaret Atwood. Cambridge Companions to Literature. Cambridge University Press. pp. 46–50. ISBN 978-0-521-83966-2. 

External links[edit]