Discovered in her papers as a handwritten manuscript in 2008, Jane Rule's autobiography is a rich and culturally significant document that follows the first twenty-one years of her life.
In writing about her formative years, she is indeed “taking” the measure of her life, assessing its contours of pleasure and pain, and accounting precisely for how it evolved, with great discretion and consideration for those who might have been affected by being represented in her work. She appreciated the ambiguity of the title she chose, with all its implications of suicide: at the end of her writing life, she was submitting herself as a person, not only to the literary and cultural, but also the moral and ethical critique of her readers.
At turns deeply moving and witty, Taking My Life probes in emotional and intellectual terms the larger philosophical questions that were to preoccupy her throughout her literary career, and showcases the origins and contexts that gave shape to Rule's rich intellectual life. Her autobiography will appeal to avid followers of her work, delighted to discover another of her works that has, until now, remained unpublished.