Between Women: Friendship, Desire, and Marriage in Victorian by Sharon Marcus PDF

By Sharon Marcus

Ladies in Victorian England wore jewellery made up of each one other's hair and wrote poems celebrating many years of friendship. They pored over magazines that defined the damaging pleasures of corporal punishment. a couple of had sexual relationships with one another, exchanged jewelry and vows, willed one another estate, and lived jointly in long term partnerships defined as marriages. yet, as Sharon Marcus exhibits, those ladies weren't visible as gender outlaws. Their wishes have been fanned via buyer tradition, and their friendships and unions have been accredited or even inspired through relations, society, and church. faraway from being sexless angels outlined basically via male wants, Victorian girls overtly loved or even dominating different ladies. Their friendships helped observe the correct of companionate love among women and men celebrated via novels, and their unions encouraged politicians and social thinkers to reform marriage law.

via an in depth exam of literature, memoirs, letters, household magazines, and political debates, Marcus finds how relationships among ladies have been a vital component to femininity. Deeply researched, powerfully argued, and packed with unique readings of accepted and awesome resources, Between Women overturns every little thing we proposal we knew approximately Victorian ladies and the heritage of marriage and kinfolk lifestyles. It bargains a brand new paradigm for theorizing gender and sexuality--not simply within the Victorian interval, yet in our own.

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Additional info for Between Women: Friendship, Desire, and Marriage in Victorian England

Sample text

Kant’s solution is to impute a “right of visit” (Besuchrecht) to the guest, which casts his hospitable reception as a legislatable, universal right, no longer dependent upon the goodwill of the host. But the corollary of this “right of visit” is an insistence upon the inviolability of national sovereignty, the fi xity of borders that must be respected as the precondition of travel for the purposes of tourism, commerce, or trade. In upholding the sovereignty of the host’s identity over the ethics of hospitality, Kant rejects the challenge to personal and group identity that hospitality has traditionally implied, which is now revalued as a menace to be avoided at all costs.

He is realized as host precisely through the loss of his identity as master. Chapter 5, “Welcoming Dionysus, or the Subject as Corps Morcelé,” departs from Klossowski’s take on femininity to explore an underappreciated aspect of Nietzsche’s thought: his intuition that man must undergo “feminization”—that is, lose his privative identity—if he is to shed what Nietzsche calls the “grammatical fiction of the ‘I’,” the imaginary consistency imparted by the signifier of personal identity. Although for Nietzsche it is the Greek god Dionysus who represents the possibility of a dissolution of the ego that is affi rmatively revalued as “divine,” and that opposes itself to the redeeming of self represented by Christ, he also asserts that “after” God, man must assume an authentically “feminine” attitude in welcoming Dionysus.

I suggest that Nietzsche’s Dionysus figures what Lacan calls the “jouissance of the Other,” which takes possession of the human being and leaves in its wake a fragmented body [corps morcelé] that can no longer appeal to a coherent self or unified body image. Both authors suggest that this divided, fragmented, or objectified body is the true site of the subject. Just as Nietzsche affi rms the “multiplicity” of the body over the unified self, Lacan suggests that the aim of analysis is to tear down the edifice of the ego and compel the analysand to assume speech from the position of the corps morcelé that the ego works to efface.

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