The Silent Echo

The Silent Echo : The Middle-aged Female Body in Contemporary Women's Fiction

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Description

The Silent Echo examines the contemporary female midlife novel and its failure to acknowledge and engage the aging female body. Examining novels by authors such as Margaret Atwood, Fay Weldon, Joan Barfoot, and Joyce Carol Oates, The Silent Echo integrates various social, psychological, and philosophical theories with those of cultural studies to analyze how and why the aging female body has become the silent echo at the core of women's fiction.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 200 pages
  • 160 x 238 x 20mm | 426g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 0739121723
  • 9780739121726
  • 2,182,388

Review quote

Feminist literary scholarship has amply engaged in the subject of the exclusion of women from their full share in the themes and ideas of the bildungsroman. It has critiqued its androcentric nature and, accordingly, outlined the poetics of the female narrative of growth, initiation, coming of age, development and maturity - all which may afford women with social and cultural inclusion. Paloge takes on a further significant step by exposing insights offered by a great number of women novelists: she focuses on the dynamic aspect of women's lives and of their coming into middle age, thus losing the symbolic and corporeal accoutrements of their sex and gender. She explores the second episode of maturation, when it is no longer society's concepts and norms of femininity and womanhood that prescribe the journey of development for women but rather it is when they become - once again - excluded. This is a brilliant demonstration of literary scholarship's ability to provide a torch for our understanding of those biases and blind spots which govern women and men in their self creation and mutual association. Another sex/gender gap is discovered here in a rich and engaging argument. -- Hannah Naveh, Tel Aviv University I find this book truly refreshing and original in its critical stance and its readiness to read through much feminist gesturing, which all-too-often serves as a palliative for the unresolved problems of aging and decline, both in life and in literature. The book is extremely well written, theoretically informed but readily accessible, and its exposure of the inconsistencies, the denials, and sometime the blatant dishonesty of middle-brow literature is done with both genuine empathy and humor. -- Daphna Erdinast-Vulcan, The University of Haifashow more

About Helen Paloge

Helen Paloge is lecturer in teacher education at Sakhnin College in Sakhnin, Israel.show more

Table of contents

Chapter 1 Preface Chapter 2 Chapter 1. Introduction Chapter 3 Chapter 2. The Midlife Novel or The Female Bildungsroman of Second Adulthood Chapter 4 Chapter 3. As Time Runs By Chapter 5 Chapter 4. Waking Up to Change Chapter 6 Chapter 5. The Image of Aging Chapter 7 Chapter 6. Body Chapter 8 Chapter 7. Mirror, Mirror...Double, Mothers Chapter 9 Chapter 8. Subject and Voice / The Gaze and Silenceshow more