The Marked Body

The Marked Body : Domestic Violence in Mid-Nineteenth-Century Literature

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The ambiguities and paradoxes of domestic violence were amplified in Victorian culture, which emphasized the home as a woman's place of security. In The Marked Body, Kate Lawson and Lynn Shakinovsky examine the discarded and violated bodies of middle-class women in selected texts of mid-nineteenth-century fiction and poetry. Guided by observations from feminism, psychoanalysis, and trauma theory, they argue that, in these works, domestic violence is a crucible in which the female body is placed, where it becomes marked by scars and disfigurement. Yet, they contend, these wounds go beyond violence to bring these women to a broader state of female subjectivity, sexuality, and consciousness. The female body, already the site of alterity, is inscribed with something that cannot be expressed; it thus becomes that which is culturally and physically denied, the place which is not.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 212 pages
  • 153.9 x 227.6 x 12.2mm | 294.84g
  • Albany, NY, United States
  • English
  • New.
  • Total Illustrations: 0
  • 0791453766
  • 9780791453766

Review quote

"Extremely well researched and well written, this book melds an intelligent reading of imagery and story with a nuanced theoretical framework, a good sense of historical context and social history, and a genuine concern for domestic violence against women in the nineteenth century. I find this book very illuminating." -- Joseph Adamson, coeditor of Scenes of Shame: Psychoanalysis, Shame, and Writing "This reading of domestic violence, which is 'behind the scenes' in several senses, is intellectually important, and speaks to a wide variety of issues in Victorian studies, feminism, legal studies, and psychoanalysis." -- Randall Craig, author of Promising Language: Betrothal in Victorian Law and Fiction
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About Kate Lawson

Kate Lawson is Associate Professor of English at the University of Northern British Columbia.

Lynn Shakinovsky is Associate Professor of English at Wilfrid Laurier University.
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Rating details

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1 20% (1)
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