A movie with a strong Steinbach connection won an Oscar for writing (Best Adapted Screenplay) Sunday night.

The screenplay for ‘Women Talking’ was based on the book of the same name by Miriam Toews, a celebrated author and native of Steinbach. The screenplay was written by Canadian director Sarah Polley.

Toews' novel "Women Talking" was published in 2018 and tells the story of a group of women in a Mennonite colony who come together to decide how to respond to a series of violent assaults from their community's men. The book has been widely praised for its powerful and nuanced portrayal of the lives and experiences of women in a patriarchal society.

The news of Toews' Oscar win has been met with excitement and pride in Steinbach.

Andrew Unger, of Daily Bonnet and now UngerReview, says Toews is a literary icon, and honouring her means honouring the arts, storytelling, and the truth.

In a blog post, Unger admits Toews is not widely recognized in her hometown yet, but most people appreciate her work.

‘Women Talking’ played at Keystone Cinema last week and the film’s Costume Designer Quita Alfred was in the Automobile City to discuss her role in the now Oscar-winning movie.

In a post to Instagram, Alfred said, “I was woefully unprepared for this experience tonight. Seeing Women Talking in Steinbach, MB, Miriam’s hometown. Being surrounded by a sold-out house full of people, some of whom were half a generation away from the way the women in our story live.”

The Oscar win is a significant achievement for Canadian literature and filmmaking.


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