Narratives of Desire: 19th-Century Spanish Fiction by Women (Penn State Studies in Romance Literatures Series)

Overview

In her first book Lou Charnon-Deutsch looked at the representation of women in male-authored texts. This book deals with women-authored texts of the same period. While women are unveiled as monstrous and are chastised or abandoned in male-written texts, novels written by women teach women how to deal with abandonment and undeserved punishment. In approaching her subject, Charnon-Deutsch draws on modern theorists such as Jessica Benjamin, Nancy Chodorow, Michel Foucault, Julia Kristeva, Lawrence Lipking, Luce ...

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Overview

In her first book Lou Charnon-Deutsch looked at the representation of women in male-authored texts. This book deals with women-authored texts of the same period. While women are unveiled as monstrous and are chastised or abandoned in male-written texts, novels written by women teach women how to deal with abandonment and undeserved punishment. In approaching her subject, Charnon-Deutsch draws on modern theorists such as Jessica Benjamin, Nancy Chodorow, Michel Foucault, Julia Kristeva, Lawrence Lipking, Luce Irigaray, Carol Gilligan, and Teresa de Lauretis.

Charnon-Deutsch explores women's domestic fiction as the product of a patriarchal society dependent upon the enforcement of certain sexual arrangements to sustain itself. She contends that the production of sexual identity is crucial to the exercise of power by a conservative patriarchy and that the domestic novel was a particularly productive genre in this regard. At the same time, she argues that feminine desire accommodates itself even within the most repressive power relations that women writers sometimes imagined as fostering rather than hindering feminine maturity. With a recognition of the contradictions inherent in women's fiction, she examines different psychological desires underlying the cult of domesticity. While some desires seem subversive to the ideal of femininity as promoted in Spanish culture, Charnon-Deutsch concludes that most promote sexual arrangements that reinforce repressive norms of feminine conduct.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780271010076
  • Publisher: Penn State University Press
  • Publication date: 5/4/1994
  • Series: Studies in Romance Literatures
  • Format: Library Binding
  • Pages: 223
  • Product dimensions: 8.00 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 0.69 (d)

Meet the Author

Lou Charnon-Deutsch is Associate Professor of Hispanic Languages at the State University of New York, Stony Brook, and author of The Nineteenth-Century Spanish Short Story: Textual Strategies of a Genre in Evolution (1985) and Gender and Representation: Women in Nineteenth-Century Spanish Realist Fiction (1990).

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Acknowledgments
About the Translations
Introduction 1
1 The Bonds of Love 15
2 Social Masochism and the Domestic Novel 41
3 Desire and Knowledge 79
4 Bearing Motherhood 113
5 New Women 141
Conclusion 187
Notes 193
Works Cited 209
Index 219
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