Julie Abraham's Are Girls Necessary?: Lesbian Writing and Modern Histories PDF

By Julie Abraham

ISBN-10: 0816656762

ISBN-13: 9780816656769

ISBN-10: 081666658X

ISBN-13: 9780816666584

"Are women necessary?" asks Julie Abraham during this provocative examine of 20th-century lesbian writing. reading the advance of lesbian writing in English around the twentieth Century, Abraham identifies a shift from this "romance" version to a extra complex "history" version. the good modernists, Woolf and Stein, in addition to the preferred writers of succeeding generations, like Mary Renault, regarded to ancient narratives, growing an immense swap within the means the "lesbian tale" is outfitted. the chances in lesbian writing, from the early romance plots via to the post-1960s liberation circulate experiments, are Abraham's geography. inside it, she bargains exact readings of significant writers in numerous genres, from excessive sleek to pulp, either British and American.

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Extra info for Are Girls Necessary?: Lesbian Writing and Modern Histories

Sample text

Dannie looked at her and smiled, slowly. 'That's what matters. Or rather, that's what makes it not matter' " (258). " But Therese returns to Carol at the novel's conclusion, after she discovers that she can be attracted to another woman. " She will not return to heterosexuality with the next turn of the narrative. Moreover, the female triangle allows Highsmith to present the relationship between Therese and Carol as specific rather than generic. 27 The heterosexual plot's production of the lesbian as an exclusively sexual being can be undermined by the subject of work, which takes characters out of romance and into the world.

But the punishment that completes the representation of lesbianism could take forms other than the disruption of the female couple by marriage or death. 14 Both the construction of the narrative through the heterosexual plot and the subsequent punishment of the female couple signify that the central relationship should be read as sexual, that is, that the relationship is lesbian. Constructing a lesbian narrative out of the heterosexual plot—for example, juxtaposing heterosexual and lesbian couples through the story of a woman who rejects a male suitor for the sake of her love for another woman—establishes that the relationship between the women is lesbian by analogy to the heterosexual relationship it has challenged.

He has been her teacher, given her books to read and praised her first poems, but she is aware that: "George . . was flattering her, tribute such as some courtier might pay to a queen who played at classicism; he did not proffer her the bare branch" (172-173). George, when he is courting her, kisses her to stop her from speaking. In contrast H. D. represents Hermione's recognition of the possibility of desire between women as an awakening to language: Just what had she been saying? She seemed to have answered this odd girl, word for word, click, snap and click, the exact requisite counter, the same game but involving something very different from the casual afterdinner sort of auction-whist her words meant with these others.

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Are Girls Necessary?: Lesbian Writing and Modern Histories by Julie Abraham


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