Orienting Masculinity, Orienting Nation: W. Somerset Maugham's Exotic Fiction
Although their settings span a wide geographical area, from the South Pacific to India, MaughaM&Apos;s exotic short stories, novels, and travelogues all, ultimately, focus on the creation of a masculine British identity. In this first book to address MaughaM&Apos;s fiction in light of recent developments in postcolonial, gender, and cultural theory, Holden argues that MaughaM&Apos;s work can be understood as an attempt to negotiate between two alternative masculine identities: those of private homosexual and public writer. Holden identifies MaughaM&Apos;s attempts to cultivate a public persona as a writer whose heterosexuality is confirmed through a process of control of language. Furthermore, Holden illuminates the fluidity of language that Maugham, in contrast to his public persona, associated with homosexuality. The basis of this study is the provocative notion that MaughaM&Apos;s texts, despite their exotic locations, ultimately dramatize a struggle over masculine British identity.
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Exposing imperialist rhetoric and divisions of Self and Other in Forster or Conrad
leads directly to questions of literary value and canon formation. A similar
exercise performed upon Maugham's texts leads nowhere, since he has already
Representative samples of criticism of Maugham's works are given in Anthony
Curtis and John Whitehead's contribution to the Routledge Critical Heritage
series and in various volumes of Contemporary Literary Criticism. The early
criticism is ...
Oxford Literary Review ( 1986): 225-40. Spores, John C. Running Amok: A
Historical Inquiry. Athens: Ohio University Center for International Studies, 1988.
Sprague, Gregory A. "Male Homosexuality in Western Culture: The Dilemma of
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