2,954 research outputs found

    Masculinity Under Assault: Homosociality in Lady Chatterley’s Lover and The Great Gatsby

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    Queer theorist Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick developed a tool for literary analysis that is known as the erotic triangle, which she uses to study relationships in pre-twentieth century literature. Sedgwick used the erotic triangle to investigate the role of sexual desire in male relationships regarding the binary of heterosexuality and homosexuality. Her idea of “homosociality,” or male bonds with an erotic charge, is often seen when using erotic triangles to analyze norms of sexuality and gender through textual relationships. Sexuality and gender are oftentimes determinants of societal power, especially in the case of masculinity. The dominance of heteronormativity in society constructs masculinity as it conforms to heterosexuality, and thus, the level of an individual’s conformity to societal standards of gender and sexuality determines the individual’s masculine identity; consequently, any threat to heteronormativity leads to anxious masculinity. This essay extends Sedgwick’s work into early twentieth century literature by using erotic triangles to examine the homosocial bonds and heterosexual relationships in two novels: D.H. Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. Following Sedgwick’s advisement against “historical blindness,” the literary texts’ representations of marriage will be historically contextualized by consulting marital advice manuals from the early twentieth century. In applying Sedgwick’s notions to the relationships in Lady Chatterley’s Lover and The Great Gatsby, the complexities of homosociality and heteronormativity are revealed by illustrating how masculinity acts while under assault

    An Almost Threesome: Erotic Love Triangles and Authorial Choice in Malory’s Le Morte D’ Arthur

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    It seems to be nearly a critically unanimous consensus that when translating Chretien de Troyes’ romance of the glorious King Arthur, Sir Thomas Malory, in his Le Morte Darthur, approaches the narrative of Sir Lancelot with the unwavering attitude that Lancelot must not only sustain the status of Arthur’s most revered knight and truest friend, but also be a true and ideal lover for Guenevere. This deep sense of friendship and comraderie between Lancelot and his king is also reflected in nearly all of the relationships between Arthur’s knights; which is, similar to de Troyes a very important component of the romances to Malory. What is not as apparent, however, is the subtle use of erotic language in Malory’s text. This is likely to be the case because the most erotic conversations almost never take place between a man and wife. Rather, this language appears more often between the adulterers or even between the knights themselves. If this is true, then it brings into question the value of marriage in the romances and how the act of adultery and the acknowledgment of the erotic affects the Code of Chivalry that each of the knights must uphold. Furthermore, critical discussion on the love triangles in Malory’s work often focuses not on the notion of the relationships being triangular, but rather focuses more on the act of adultery itself. Thus, only two characters are truly involved in the romance, with the third (King Arthur and King Mark) often being presented as the spouse that pushes their wives to be unfaithful. By exclusively discussing the relationships as only traditional adultery a discussion of the other relationships (and often more erotic) are overlooked. In order to conflate the constructions of all of the pertinent relationships it is necessary to look at the discourse between all parties as love triangles instead. So instead of continuing in a similar critical vein and focusing my analysis on the act of adultery alone, this paper will investigate through Malory’s use of love languages, as well as the invocation of the erotic and gendered language, the ways in which this adultery is constructed and how it is nearly a direct inverted mirror image of the marital language. Therefore, taking into account the two most notable and arguably most influential adulterous relationships in Malory’s romance (Sir Tristram and Isode and Sir Lancelot and queen Guenevere), as well as the deep friendships between the knights, the language that the English writer uses in both narratives allows for a deeper consideration on the reception of adulterous relationships, love, and the erotic in a realm based strictly on chivalry and honor

    Tirant lo Blanc(h): masculinities, phallosocial desire, and triangular constellations

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    2011 Fall.Includes bibliographical references.The introduction of this thesis provides a revised survey that examines the analysis of Tirant scholars to date, including evaluations of its sources and influences, theories concerning its circulation, its autobiographical aspects, and its genre, among other approaches to literary criticism. It draws attention to points of contention and highlights and rectifies those that have been overlooked or that have remained undisputed. "Chapter One: Queer Heterosexualities in the Tirant: Straight until Proven 'Other'" addresses the issue of masculinities in the clergy, the chivalry, and the monarchy by mapping models of masculinity--conventional and competing--within a phallosocial context. And "Chapter Two: Bizarre Love Triangles in the Tirant: Consummation of Phallosocial Desire" traces phallosocial desire by analyzing the processes that lead to a symbolic consummation of same-sex relations by means of erotic triangles within a (mandatory) heterosexuality, where women become the (required) vessel by which phallosocial desire is reified and brought to a culmination within the established patriarchal paradigm of compulsory heterosexuality

    Romance revisited: transformations of the marital love triangle in women’s fictions.

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    First paragraph: Introduction The triangle is a model of a sort, or rather a whole family of models. [...] They always allude to the mystery, transparent yet opaque, of human relations. (Girard, 1976: 2-3). The graphic schema and the theoretical frame of analysis of this study is what David Lodge has aptly described as a familiar novelistic situation: the ‘eternal’ love triangle (Lodge, 1981: 143). As a structural literary device, the love triangle artificially stabilises impulses of desire into a fixed set of erotic positions. In other words, it is a ‘figure by which the “commonsense” of our intellectual tradition schematizes erotic relations’ (Sedgwick, 1985: 21). From the legendary Tristan and Iseult to the American soap epic Dynasty1, from Jewish mythology to postfeminist fiction, triangular models have always engaged the interest of generations of listeners/readers/viewers and, over the centuries, the notoriously enduring and seemingly transhistorical appeal of the love triangle has affirmed itself. Narratives abound with love triangles and triadic configurations construct standard and paradigmatic narrative situations that, using Umberto Eco’s terminology, could be termed ‘intertextual archetypes’ (Eco, 1988: 448).3 Triangular constellations of human interaction are not only inscribed within Western culture but are also formative erotic models that are 2 embedded in a shared socio-cultural script and that, as a result, contribute to the ideological construction of the iconography of love

    Desire And Influence: Male Self-Realization And Film Progression Due To The Influential Women In The Films Of Wes Anderson

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    My thesis is an analysis arguing that the roles of women in three of Wes Anderson\u27s films, Rushmore (1996), The Royal Tenenbaums (2001), and The Life Aquatic(2004), are vital in influencing the men that surround them to come to a self-realization and in the progression of the film as each character finds closure, despite critic\u27s claims. Critics Jesse Mayshark and Greg Carlson examine Anderson\u27s films to be basically about men stuck in arrested development that as they rival each other they grow and mature, and discount the roles of women as simply a side note. I build upon their analysis by using the theory of erotic triangles in literature as they are explained by Eve Sedgwick in her book Between Men: English Literature and Male Homosocial Desire. Much of her work builds off of Sigmund Freud and Girard\u27s theories, although they differ in the fact that Freud and Girard see the love triangle as being symmetrical despite gender and Sedgwick theorizes that the triangle is asymmetrical due to gender and the rivalry for power between the men that crave homosocial interaction in the form of rivalry over the woman placed at the center of the triangle. What I do different is build upon Sedgwick, Mayshark and Carlson\u27s examinations and includes the analysis of the women and how I believe that the women that anchor the triangle(s) are actually the most powerful and influential characters in the films. The women in Anderson\u27s films and that I analyze are very intelligent, beautiful, strong, yet damaged individuals, that influence the men and themselves to come to a self-realization and acceptance of themselves and others. I found that in a Eurocentric society, critics and audiences alike are more comfortable perceiving women as less influential and capable than their male counterpart, while being more vulnerable and emotional, although women have made headway in even the last twenty years and actually the last four (Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, 2009).

    Queering Time and Space: Mediated Desire in The Golden Bowl and Mrs. Dalloway

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    In Tendencies, Eve Sedgwick characterizes what she terms the “queer moment” as “inextinguishable” (xii). For Sedgwick, “queer is a continuing moment, movement, motive—recurrent, eddying, troublant” (xii). Sedgwick traces the etymology of the word “queer,” saying, “the word ‘queer’ itself means across—it comes from the Indo-European root –twerkw, which also yields the German quer (transverse), Latin torquere (to twist), English athwart” and concluding of “queer,” “keenly, it is relational, and strange” (xii). Sedgwick’s theorizing forms the mainstay of my Honors thesis. My research has taken me abroad to England and has allowed me to begin tracing Girard\u27s theory of mimetic desire back to Freud\u27s Oedipal triangle and ahead to Sedgwick\u27s work in Between Men to offer a reading of three erotic triangles, two in The Golden Bowl and one in Mrs. Dalloway. I am arguing a point about the queer and vaguely incestuous elements of the Maggie-Charlotte-Amerigo, the Maggie-Charlotte-Adam, and the Clarissa-Doris-Elizabeth triangles through an appeal to their shared use of spatiotemporal metaphors and repetitions. The emphasis on repetition and cyclicality reflects Sedgwick’s theorizing on queer time and eddying and presents a way to suggest a heightened queerness embedded in the structure of the narratives. I will conclude by proposing that the authors bother to encode queer and incestuous possibilities, what Hugh Stevens calls subliminal fantasies, (Moon 433) especially in spatiotemporal echoes because incest and queerness are what Sedgwick terms the unspeakable (Sedgwick 94). Consequently, this codification is a way of giving voice to the unspeakable. That the argument I am making in reference to Mrs. Dalloway is much more accepted in the academic literature than is my argument in reference to The Golden Bowl is a reflection of the socio-historical and literary progress made in the years following James’s publication of The Golden Bowl

    Passion and Conflict: Medieval Islamic Views of the West

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    This article analyzes the representation of al-Andalus and North Africa in medieval Islamic maps from the eleventh to the fifteenth centuries. In contrast to other maps of the Mediterranean, which display a veneer of harmony and balance, the image of the Maghrib is by deliberate design one of conflict and confusion; of love and hate; of male vs. female; of desire vs rejection. This paper interprets and explains the reasons behind the unusual depiction of Andalus and the Maghrib by medieval Islamic cartographers. In addition, this article develops a new methodology of interpreting medieval Islamic maps employing a deconstruction of the forms through an analysis of different levels of gaze. The analysis unfolds into the use of erotic and nostalgic Hispano-Arabic poetry as a lens of interpretation for Islamic maps