We are born into blankets. They keep us alive and they cover us in death. We pull and tug on blankets to see us through the night or an illness. They shield us in mourning and witness our most intimate pleasures.
Curious, fearless, vulnerable, and critical, Blanket interweaves cultural critique with memoir to cast new light on a ubiquitous object: It reveals blankets everywhere—film, art, geology, disasters, battlefields, resistance, home—and transforms an ordinary thing into a vibrant and vital carrier of stories and secrets, an object of inheritance and belonging, a companion to uncover.
Kara Thompson’s Blanket is an elegant, nearly seamless weaving through Native politics and histories, American violence, personal loss and remembrance, psychoanalysis and healing, geology, artworks and literature—varied stitches and detail toward the greater themes and design of comfort, protection, trauma, loss, and the disparate turnings of human living. Kara Thompson has stirred a deep desire in me to understand… to understand what? I ask myself. It is not the what, so much as the what is not: What is not seen, but within the folds. What is not often considered, but like a blanket, felt with “a kind of muscle memory […] the trace of habitation.” What is rarely accounted for in language, signifiers and terms, such as the “affect, kinship, ceremony, inheritance, story” that imbue anything with real meaning. This book draws unexpected connections and links from one subject to the next. And in the spaces between those connections, there is a magic I have, until now, only known to exist in poetry. From one paragraph to the next, I discover something more of myself, hidden or maybe even protected, both grieving and comforted, tightly threaded within all these blankets. –Layli Long Soldier, Whiting Writers' Award recipient and author of Whereas (Graywolf, 2017).
Liquid brilliance blankets this book, making its forays endlessly moving - and often surprising. Simply exquisite in all its folds. –Kathryn Bond Stockton, Distinguished Professor of English, University of Utah, USA and author of The Queer Child, or Growing Sideways in the Twentieth Century (Duke University Press, 2009)