Heroic Desire: Lesbian Identity and Cultural Space
"Lesbians are adept at constructing survival strategies. Our being in this world exacts a cost, and our identities mutate to incorporate and resist that cost. The reality of our world is our relentless demand for presence, an occupation of space which we have colonized for ourselves, in the name of a configuration of desires we call 'lesbian', -- the more reflective we can become about these tactics, the more powerful is our rhetoric of existence".
This book is concerned with the ways contemporary lesbians have taken up imaginative and material space. It describes the mechanics of presence, how modern lesbians have produced a discursive space which offers a refutation to the closet. Identities are produced, expressed, and authenticated by and through space. Understanding "real" and metaphorical spatial structures helps us to discover new sites of presence and resistance. Some famous spaces, such as New York, Paris, and Berlin, have been constitutive of modern gay and lesbian identities. Social spaces teach us something about the relations of domination and subordination around us, and we have seen recently in that struggle "to be", a growing politics of location and locatedness.
Space is also taken imaginatively. Our narratives, which have become moral and political handbooks, provide role models for building and consolidating identities and communities. By processes of interpretation, drawing from literary and cultural theory, the author displays ways in
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Elizabeth Wilson14 has taken issue with the predominant feminist opinion that
the flaneur is essentially male. ... rejecting the preferred version of the flaneur's
voyeuristic mastery: Benjamin's critique identifies the 'phantasmagoria', the
Queering the flaneur Wilde himself commented on late nineteenth-century
London society as 'entirely made up of dowdies and dandies... The men are all
dowdies and the women are all dandies.'17 This act of performative interpretation
Here is epitomized a crucial structuring principle of the flaneur: at the same time
as he is the master of his own agency, his symbiosis with the city is such that his
individualism is constantly threatening to implode, as he himself becomes ...
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The Lesbian Flaneur
The Butch Body
The Lesbian Outlaw
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The Lieutenant Nun: Transgenderism, Lesbian Desire, and Catalina de Erauso
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