Paris Stories
New York Review Press
Mavis Gallant
“The Remission”

“The Remission” is from Mavis Gallant’s PARIS STORIES (New York Review Books, 2002). The story originally appeared in The New Yorker in August 1979, and after a period of being out of print was reissued by New York Review Books, along with many of Gallant’s other stories.


Gallant published 120 stories in The New Yorker 1951-1995, a number that exceeded John Cheever’s 100+ stories, and ranks close to John Updike’s record, but Gallant remains less well known than either of her two male contemporaries. Within literary circles, however, she has become a “shared and loved and daunting secret,” writes Michael Ondaatje in his forward to the PARIS STORIES. Gallant was born in Canada in 1922 and has lived in Paris since the 1950’s. In 1989, Gallant was made a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters.


Jhumpa Lahiri, who interviewed Gallant for Granta in 2009, considers “The Remission” one of Gallant’s best stories. The story, says, Lahiri, is “a mature, unforgettable portrait of a dying man,” but it also displays “the bond – sometime volitle, sometimes desperate, sometimes missing – between mothers and children.”

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