This book forms an introduction to the rapidly growing field of lesbian studies. Steering a middle course between a high theorya and detailed textual analysis, it provides both those new to the field and more experienced readers in lesbian/gay and feminist scholarship with original insights into the contradictory meanings of lesbian sexuality in Western culture. Exploring different cultural forms, including twentieth--century fiction and Hollywood cinema, Hoogland addresses topical theoretical questions concerning the shifting significance of lesbian sexuality as they arise from careful textual analyses. Among the examples discussed are Alice Walkera s The Color Purple, Sylvia Platha s The Bell Jar, and the Hollywood thriller Basic Instinct. Guiding concerns are the interrelations between knowledge and desire, between sexuality and gender, and the violent operation of heterosexual ideologies. Adopting a psychoanalytical perspective, Hoogland concludes by critically interrogating feminisma s ambivalent stakes in female same--sex desire. Lesbian Configurations is both a valuable introduction to an expanding field and an original contribution to current debates.
- Paperback | 184 pages
- 155 x 229 x 16mm | 292g
- 30 Jan 1997
- Polity Press
- Oxford, United Kingdom
Table of contents
Introduction. 1. Defining Differences: The Lavender Menace and The Color Purple. . 2. Basic Instinct: The Lesbian Spectre as Castrating Agent. 3. Impossible Subject Among Multiple Crossovers: Roman Polanskia s Bitter Moon. 4. Sex/Textual Conflicts in The Bell Jar: Sylvia Platha s Doubling Negatives. 5. Queer Undercurrents: Disruptive Desire in Elizabeth Bowena s Friends and Relations. . 6. Fatal Attractions: Feminist Theory and the Lesbian Lure. Epilogue. Notes. Bibliography. Index.
a Lesbian Configurations is at once a light--casting journey through some of the densest thickets in contemporary literary and psychoanalytic theory and a work of generous, energizing scholarship. These are bravura, resolute readings: intelligent, alert, often droll, and rich in insights about the paradoxical place of the lesbian in the modern imagination.a Terry Castle, Stanford University a renee hooglanda s Lesbian Configurations is an engaging and lucid analysis of contemporary lesbian theories. Its intriguing readings of The Color Purple and The Bell Jar lead the way to a sophisticated and enlightening lesbian critical practice. Her astute analyses of contemporary film and other popular cultural texts demonstrate clever and useful strategies for lesbian reading.a Judith Roof, Indiana University a The growing visibility of lesbian sexuality in mainstream western culture has been accompanied by a rapidly developing lesbian academic interest in tracing the cultural configurations of same--sex female desire, a project that situates lesbian scholarship and theoretical critique on the cutting edge of contemporary cultural theory. [This book is] a welcome addition to this dynamic, growing body of work.a Cultural Studies