Search Results

Hybridity, Trade and the Eighteenth-Century Individual
Author: C.M. Owen
What does the story of Robinson Crusoe have to do with understanding past and present women’s lives? The Female Crusoe: Hybridity, Trade and the Eighteenth-Century Individual investigates the possibility that Daniel Defoe’s famous work was informed by qualities attributed to trade, luxury and credit and described as feminine in the period. In this volume, Robinson Crusoe and the female castaway narratives published in its wake emerge as texts of social criticism that draw on neglected values of race and gender to challenge the dominant values of society. Such narratives worked to establish status and authority for marginalised characters and subjects who were as different, and as similar, as Defoe’s gentleman-tradesman and Wollstonecraft’s independent woman. The Female Crusoe goes on to address the twentieth-century engagement with the castaway tale, showing how three contemporary authors, in their complex and gendered negotiations of power and identity, echo, even while they challenge, the concerns of their eighteenth-century predecessors. This work will be of interest to students interested in literary engagements with individualism and women’s rights in the eighteenth and twentieth centuries.
Volume Editors: Adele Parker and Stephenie Young
This study presents a unique collection of essays which focus on the relationships among form, aesthetics, and transnational women’s writing produced in recent years. The essays in this volume treat literary works from diverse cultures and geographies, concentrating on the intersections of theory and literature. This results in a wide spectrum of identities and texts – including the work of Swedish poet Aase Berg, the Indian translation market, the Chicana novel, creative non-fiction by Croatian writer Dubravka Ugrešić, and multilingual hybrid texts by Theresa Hak Kyung Cha – in order to provide a framework for an overarching theory of transnationalism as it interacts with newer paradigms of gendered identity and the new forms of literature to which they contribute. Transnationalism and Resistance offers a multifaceted approach to transnational studies and constitutes a cogent analysis of the ways in which women’s writing informs contemporary global literary production. This volume is of interest for scholars in women’s studies, literature, the social sciences, cultural studies and all other fields that take an interest in writing that addresses contemporary global issues.

The recurring theme of Lovecraft’s horror fiction is the invasion of the Earth by ancient races of extra-terrestrial beings. While this is a trope in most early science fiction, Lovecraft gives it an unusual twist: vastly superior alien races inhabited the Earth long before mankind, are currently dormant, but are ready to wake up and overthrow man. One of the first signs of this return is the birth of monstrous, evil beings, the scions of humans and alien monsters, who establish communities that are shunned, but develop inexorably. The theme of birth, reproduction, and the female in general is quite uncommon in Lovecraft’s works. An overwhelming majority of protagonists are male, and women are most often consorts, many of them of a monstrous kind. The theme of birth is invariably associated with the monstrous: hybrids born to corrupted men (and, in one instance, a woman), whose blood will taint their descendants for generations, as the protagonist of ‘The Shadow over Innsmouth’ exemplifies. In contrast, the protagonists of Lovecraft’s stories are generally celibates, most often aristocratic intellectuals, with no families or love interests, apparently strangers to the physical concerns of sex and reproduction. Those individuals are powerless in a world where evolution is synonym with degenerating, and when births, and indeed all forms of sexual activity (as seen with the case of Edward Derby and his hybrid wife Asenath in ‘The Thing on the Doorstep’), are potential threats. This chapter will study the theme of evil births and hybridisation in Lovecraft’s works in an attempt to show its multiple nuances: rather than unambiguous disgust with sex and the feminine, Lovecraft’s works, especially in later years, display a profound existential fear, where monstrous births are only a facet of the threats that weight down on the stability of the world, and the protagonists’ sanity.

In: The Evil Body

The dissolution of the frontiers between the human and non-human animal realms was a common motif in ancient cultures, where primeval bonds between animals and humans were taken for granted. Legatee to quite diverse and even contradictory perspectives and aspects of such connections, the Middle Ages produced a concomitant complex net of categories from which these dynamics were to be surveyed. The ubiquitous presence of the animal element is shown clearly in medieval literary and artistic representations as evidence of its crucial role in the shaping of perceptions of sexuality, food, natural sustainability, property or governance. The cultural construction of gender allowed a short distance between the animal and the female conditions, given the essential material and reproductive values with which they were equally endowed. Processes such as hybridation and metamorphoses reveal the ambiguous space occupied by women’s bodies as intermediaries between culture and nature, and thus, as marginal destabilising elements in the configuration of the boundaries between the human and animal spheres. This paper will analyse some of the medieval representations of the female element in its proximity to the animal nature in order to reflect on the relationship between the social construction of women and the oppression of animals.

In: Masculinity/Femininty: re-framing a fragmented debate

Joyce Carol Oates’s novel, The Gravedigger’s Daughter (2007) tells the story of the Schwart, a family of Jew immigrants fleeing Nazi Germany in 1936 and their inability to adapt themselves to American society. In different ways all the members of the Schwart family turn into monstrous beings. All except the seemingly successful female protagonist, Rebecca, who surprisingly manages to endure the cruel and hideous atmosphere of her damp home near the graveyard and escape death in her childhood. In this chapter I will try to analyse fear and monstrosity as it is found in The Gravedigger’s Daughter. In doing so, I will identify the nature of monstrosity in the Schwart and other less obvious cases of monstrosity. This will lead us to examining the reasons why Rebecca, the youngest and most vulnerable of the Schwart is the only member of the family who survives in such a cruel and hostile environment. Finally, Rebecca’s strategies for survival and their implication will be taken into consideration in an effort to try to understand the nature of her accomplishment in the context of Contemporary American History. It is patent that Rebecca’s tactics have saved her from extinction and death yet they prove a failure in her attempts to eradicate her panic of returning to a world of domestic terrors. The fact is that Rebecca’s repressed fears and monsters of the past haunt Rebecca’s existence as she grows into adulthood and a comfortable bourgeois life style.

In: Twisted Mirrors: Reflections of Monstrous Humanity
Feminism, Narration and Polyphony
Author: Rita Tyagi
Ananda Devi: Feminism, Narration and Polyphony is the first full-length monograph devoted to Ananda Devi, a dynamic contemporary Francophone writer. Recipient of Prix Louis-Guilloux and Prix Télévision Suisse Romande du Roman, she is described by many as a prototype of a new generation of Mauritian writers. This book analyses Devi’s unconventional polyphonic narratives, particularly, her strategies that allow marginalized narrators to disrupt androcentric and dominant structures of narrative construction, thereby creating hybrid magical spaces for feminine expression. Drawing on the notion of feminist narratology that investigates the relation between gender and narrative, this book focuses on a wide range of Western and non-Western narrative strategies such as plot and plotlessness, narrative metalepsis, pluritemporality, multisubjectivity, myths, folktales and magic. It also demonstrates how her texts become the point of convergence of the West and the non-West, the feminine and the androcentric, the real and the extra-real as muted discourses resurface and traditional distinctions between categories are blurred in favor of alternate and new possibilities. As this book is interdisciplinary in its approach, it will appeal to a broad range of audience from those interested in Contemporary Francophone and Indian-Ocean Literature to scholars in Women’s Writing, Post-Colonial Studies, and Narratology.
This essay collection is dedicated to intersections between gender theories and theories of laughter, humour, and comedy. It is based on the results of a three-year research programme, entitled “Gender – Laughter – Media” (2003-2006) and includes a series of investigations on traditional and modern media in western cultures from the 18th to the 20th century. A theoretical opening part is followed by four thematic sections that explore the multiple forms of irritating stereotypical gender perceptions; aspects of (post-)colonialism and multiculturalism; the comic impact of literary and media genres in different national cultures; as well as the different comic strategies in fictional, philosophical, artistic or real life communication. The volume presents a variety of new approaches to the overlaps between gender and laughter that have only barely been considered in groundbreaking research. It forms a valuable read for scholars of literary, theatre, media, and cultural studies, at the same time reaching out to a general readership.

way like most kids”: Bisexuality, adolescence and the drama of One Tree Hill . Sexuality & Culture , 13 ( 4 ), 237 – 251 . Meyer , M. D. ( 2010 ). Representing bisexuality on television: The case for intersectional hybrids . Journal of Bisexuality , 10 ( 4 ), 366 – 387 . Miller , A. D

In: Expanding the Rainbow
Author: Raymond Lee

(2016, p. 234) has argued that “New Age markets are primarily the New Age movement’s primary institutional forms … [where] the bricolage concept is often used to account for the pluralistic tendencies of postmodernity.” Here, the reference to New Age as the classical model for discussing the hybrid

In: Research in the Social Scientific Study of Religion, Volume 31