Sexing the Text: The Rhetoric of Sexual Difference in British Literature, 1700-1750

Sexing the Text: The Rhetoric of Sexual Difference in British Literature, 1700-1750

by Todd C. Parker
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0791444864

ISBN-13: 9780791444863

Pub. Date: 02/28/2000

Publisher: State University of New York Press

Charts the emergence of a new kind of heterosexual rhetoric in eighteenth-century British literature, providing a nuanced reinterpretation of gender and its role in the major genres of the period.

An important contribution to the study of the history of sexuality, this book examines the emergence of a new kind of heterosexual rhetoric in the early eighteenth

Overview

Charts the emergence of a new kind of heterosexual rhetoric in eighteenth-century British literature, providing a nuanced reinterpretation of gender and its role in the major genres of the period.

An important contribution to the study of the history of sexuality, this book examines the emergence of a new kind of heterosexual rhetoric in the early eighteenth century, a rhetoric that ultimately displaced earlier and more diverse expressions of sexuality and the body. Drawing on traditional scholarly methods as well recent queer-theoretical perspectives, the book traces the rise of the modern paradigm of compulsory heterosexuality, and counters certain feminist assumptions about the nature of “masculinity” and “male character” during the period. Throughout, Parker offers intriguing readings of a variety of texts, including the fiercely homophobic pamphlet Onania; or the Heinous Sin of Self-Pollution, Jonathan Swift’s political satires on William Wood and Richard Tighe, Alexander Pope’s poems To Cobham and To a Lady, Eliza Haywood’s romance novel Philidore and Placentia, and John Cleland’s pornographic novel Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780791444863
Publisher:
State University of New York Press
Publication date:
02/28/2000
Pages:
218
Product dimensions:
5.84(w) x 8.87(h) x 0.48(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

Introduction: Sexuality and the "Natural" Subject of the Early Eighteenth Century

One
Onania: Self-Pollution and the Danger of Female Sexuality

Two
Swift and the Political Anus

Three
Pope's To Cobham and To a Lady: Empiricism and the Synecdochic Woman

Four
Haywood's Philidore and Placentia, or What the Eunuch Lost

Five
Reading the Rhetoric of Sexual Difference in Cleland's Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure

Coda

Notes

Bibliography

Index

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