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Martin Kevorkian, Chair CAL 226, Mailcode B5000, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-4991

Spring 2006

E 389P • Lesbian Genres

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
33970 F
12:00 PM-3:00 PM

Course Description

This course will explore some of the formal features of "lesbian literature," a term we will put under question in our work together. In reading widely over 19th- and 20th-century poetry and fiction we will ask questions such as the following: What literary genres, if any, seem to attract "lesbian writers" (another term open to definition during the course of the semester, as our authors will include many who are not necessarily or not obviously lesbians)? Can "lesbian writers" be said to have invented or revitalized new literary genres (the fragment, the second-person novel, the mixed genre autobiography, fiction/theory, queer performance)? What are the politics of such an investigation of literary form? Readings will include both standard and experimental works of genre criticism, as well as a wide variety of literary texts (another term understood broadly for the purposes of this course).


Tentative list of texts:

Bannon, Beebo Brinker

Barnes, Nightwood

Bechdel, Dykes to Watch Out For

Bridgforth, Love Conjure/Blues

Brown, The Terrible Girls

Carson, If Not, Winter: Fragments of Sappho

Cunningham, The Hours

Feinstein, Stone Butch Blues

Hacker, Love, Death and the Changing of the Seasons

Hall, The Well of Loneliness

Larsen, Passing

Lorde, Zami: A New Spelling of My Name

Mootoo, Cereus Blooms at Night

Moraga, Loving in the War Years

Rich, Selected Poems (2004)

Rule, This is Not For You

Stein, Baby Precious Always Shines

Woolf, Orlando

Selected Poems by Anzaldua, Barrett Browning, Behn, Brooks, Dickinson, Millay, Rossetti, Seward and others.

Selections from:

Attridge, The Rhythms of English Poetry

Burke, Philosophy of Literary Form

Cohen and Prendergast, Spectacles of Realism: Body, Gender, Genre

Frye, Anatomy of Criticism

Hollander, Vision and Resonance

Kacandes, Talk Fiction


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