Ambiguous Discourse: Feminist Narratology and British Women - download pdf or read online

By Kathy Mezei

ISBN-10: 0807822906

ISBN-13: 9780807822906

Rigorously melding thought with shut readings of texts, the members to Ambiguous Discourse discover the position of gender within the fight for narrative keep an eye on of particular works by means of British writers Jane Austen, Virginia Woolf, Anita Brookner, Angela Carter, Jeanette Winterson, and Mina Loy. This choice of twelve essays is the 1st publication dedicated to feminist narratology--the blend of feminist concept with the learn of the constructions that underpin all narratives. till lately, narratology has resisted the advances of feminism partly, as a few participants argue, simply because thought has replicated prior assumptions of male authority and viewpoint in narrative. Feminist narratology, notwithstanding, contextualizes the cultural buildings of gender inside of its learn of narrative innovations. 9 of those essays are unique, and 3 were revised for e-book during this quantity. The participants are Melba Cuddy-Keane, Denise Delorey, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Susan Stanford Friedman, Janet Giltrow, Linda Hutcheon, Susan S. Lanser, Alison Lee, Patricia Matson, Kathy Mezei, Christine Roulston, and Robyn Warhol.

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By reading Austen by means of Bakhtin and vice versa, I will try to establish a dialectical relationship between these two kinds of writing, exploring the ways in which each text respectively constructs its notion of difference and examining what it privileges in terms of narrative conflict. In his survey of the shift and development from epic to novelistic discourse in "Discourse in the Novel," Bakhtin analyzes the role and effect of the sentimental novel. " The notion of the real, therefore, has shifted away from the home back into the public square, and the sentimental novel is now being read as that which evades reality rather than as a discourse that "represents" it.

Love quite literally hurts in Persuasion, and if the female body is the vehicle and object of the empowering language of looking, it is also the site of much discomfort.  Speaking strictly historically, one could surmise that a woman of Anne Elliot's class and marital status would have had very little opportunity for solitude or for choosing whether to be present at social and family events.  Throughout much of Persuasion, the heroine's body must necessarily be a body in pain.  But the passage also suggests that "tenderness" is the exclusive right of the slender, virginal, relatively youthful female body, inappropriate to the body of the sexually experienced mother.

What Persuasion does is to distinguish among kinds of looking, juxtaposing the feminine focalization that relies on the heroine's viewpoint with the objectifying gaze—often associated in this novel with male characters—which others in the text direct at the heroine's body.  The result is to overturn the tradition of the gaze that Claudia Johnson has so persuasively traced through eighteenth­century novels of sensibility.  "What is emphasized in this literature," according to Johnson, ''is the feeling of the onlooker, not the feeling of the sufferer," and she argues convincingly that this pattern is reproduced in Austen's first published novel (169).

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Ambiguous Discourse: Feminist Narratology and British Women Writers by Kathy Mezei

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