Lesbian Feminism female separatism; women centered Argues that lesbianism is central to feminism. –Woman identified woman (Radicalesbians, 1970) –Lesbian continuum (Adrienne Rich): All women are lesbians; women can only achieve integrity through lesbianism.
The Woman identified woman “It is the primacy of women relating to women, of women creating a new consciousness of and with each other, which is at the heart of women's liberation, and the basis for the cultural revolution.” http://scriptorium.lib.duke.edu/wlm/womid/
Lesbian Feminism The most important tenet of lesbian feminism is that all women can and should become lesbians in order to invest the majority of their energy in giving love and support to women. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lesbian_feminism
Queer Theory Includes both lesbian and gay studies Influenced by post-structuralism in the 1980s Aims to deconstruct the hetero/homo hierarchy (Barry 143-44)
Queer Theory Identity = a shifting signifier, not a fixed entity Marked by “an anti-essentialist, postmodernist concept of identity as a series of masks, roles, and potentialities, a kind of amalgam of everything which is provisional, contingent, and improvisatory.” (Barry 146)
Judith Butler Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity. London: Routledge, 1990.
Judith Butler “Gender is a performance; it's what you do at particular times, rather than a universal who you are.” http://www.theory.org.uk/ctr-butl.htm
Judith Butler “As the effects of a subtle and politically enforced performativity, gender is an “act,” as it were, that is open to splittings, self- parody, self-criticism, and those hyperbolic exhibitions of ‘the natural’ that, in their very exaggeration, reveal its fundamentally phantasmatic 幻想 / 幽靈性 status” (147).
Performativity Performative utterances: ‘I do’, ‘I name this ship’, ‘I give and bequeath’ To utter the sentence... is not to describe my doing... It is to do it. None of these utterances is either true or false... The term ‘performative’... indicates that the issuing of the utterance is the performing of an action... (J. L. Austin qtd. in Wolfreys 183)
Eve K. Sedgwick “Gender Assymmetry and Erotic Triangles.” (Between Men: English Literature and Male Homosocial Desire. 1985.) Feminisms. Eds. robyn r. warhol and diane price herndl. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers UP, 1991.
Eve K. Sedgwick Sedgwick cites Gené Girard’s observation that “the bond between rivals in an erotic triangle as being even stronger, more heavily determinant of actions and choices, than anything in the bond between either of the lovers and the beloved” (478).
Eve K. Sedgwick A woman is often used as “a ‘conduit of a relationship’ in which the true partner is a man” (481).
Eve K. Sedgwick “Sedgwick is interested in the ways in which homosocial desire is constituted... between men whose bonding is forged through their rivalry over a woman who mediates their relationship and deflects any taint of homoeroticism” (Norton 2433).
Literary Consequences 1. It is difficult to decide what a lesbian/gay text is. 2. There is a tendency to devalue literary realism and favor such anti- realist genres as thrillers, comic and parodic fiction, and sexual fantasy. (Barry 146-47)
Director: Neil Jordan Plot Summary: http://www.tc.umn.edu/~yahnk001/filmteach/cryi ng-v.htm
The Crying Game Discussion Questions: 1. What binary opposites are undercut? By what? 2. What does Dil signify? An “object of visual pleasure” or more? 3. What are the connotations of the title “The Crying Game”?
References Butler, Judith. Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity. London: Routledge, 1990. Sedgwick, Eve K. “Gender Assymmetry and Erotic Triangles.” Feminisms. Eds. robyn r. warhol and diane price herndl. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers UP, 1991. Wolfreys, Julian. Critical Keywords in Literary and Cultural Theory. New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2004 http://www.theory.org.uk/ctr-butl.htm