Narrative, Gender, and Masquerade in the American Novel, 1853-1920

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/222893
Title:
Narrative, Gender, and Masquerade in the American Novel, 1853-1920
Author:
Jessee, Margaret Jay
Issue Date:
2012
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Embargo:
Dissertation Not Available (per Author's Request) / University of Arizona affiliates can find this item in the ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Database
Abstract:
Narrative, Gender, and Masquerade tracks the way the American novel of manners structures itself on representations of a pair of purportedly opposite and opposing women, the fair, innocent girl and the dark, tempting seductress. This opposition increasingly merges into sameness even as the novel in which it appears labors to keep the two characters separate in order to stabilize its textual architecture of thematic and formal binaries. Presenting itself as a text closely related to a social reality, the American novel of manners is structured as a masquerade: purporting to reveal as it conceals, conjuring readerly doubt as to the nature of both mask and reality. There are two main theoretical traditions in the study of masquerade. The first, the anthropologically-inflected cultural and literary historical approach to masks and masquerade, typically is applied to literary texts to explain religious and political historical exigencies as reflected in a given work of literature. The second, the psychoanalically-based theory of femininity as a masquerade, is most often deployed to use the text as a means of explaining the male gaze, desire, and gender performance. My reading of the American novel as gendered rests on dissolving the disciplinary borders between the two, thereby focusing reading on the form of the novel as well as its relation to its cultural, historical, and literary context. The novels I analyze situate women into stereotypical binary roles of the virgin and the seductress. These narratives register a duality between reality and representation that is analogous to the gender masking the novels take as their theme.
Type:
text; Electronic Dissertation
Keywords:
Gender Masquerade; Henry James; Nathaniel Hawthorne; William Dean Howells; English; American Novel of Manners; Edith Wharton
Degree Name:
Ph.D.
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
Graduate College; English
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Advisor:
Zwinger, Lynda M.

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoenen_US
dc.titleNarrative, Gender, and Masquerade in the American Novel, 1853-1920en_US
dc.creatorJessee, Margaret Jayen_US
dc.contributor.authorJessee, Margaret Jayen_US
dc.date.issued2012en
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en_US
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en_US
dc.description.releaseDissertation Not Available (per Author's Request) / University of Arizona affiliates can find this item in the ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Databaseen_US
dc.description.abstractNarrative, Gender, and Masquerade tracks the way the American novel of manners structures itself on representations of a pair of purportedly opposite and opposing women, the fair, innocent girl and the dark, tempting seductress. This opposition increasingly merges into sameness even as the novel in which it appears labors to keep the two characters separate in order to stabilize its textual architecture of thematic and formal binaries. Presenting itself as a text closely related to a social reality, the American novel of manners is structured as a masquerade: purporting to reveal as it conceals, conjuring readerly doubt as to the nature of both mask and reality. There are two main theoretical traditions in the study of masquerade. The first, the anthropologically-inflected cultural and literary historical approach to masks and masquerade, typically is applied to literary texts to explain religious and political historical exigencies as reflected in a given work of literature. The second, the psychoanalically-based theory of femininity as a masquerade, is most often deployed to use the text as a means of explaining the male gaze, desire, and gender performance. My reading of the American novel as gendered rests on dissolving the disciplinary borders between the two, thereby focusing reading on the form of the novel as well as its relation to its cultural, historical, and literary context. The novels I analyze situate women into stereotypical binary roles of the virgin and the seductress. These narratives register a duality between reality and representation that is analogous to the gender masking the novels take as their theme.en_US
dc.typetexten_US
dc.typeElectronic Dissertationen_US
dc.subjectGender Masqueradeen_US
dc.subjectHenry Jamesen_US
dc.subjectNathaniel Hawthorneen_US
dc.subjectWilliam Dean Howellsen_US
dc.subjectEnglishen_US
dc.subjectAmerican Novel of Mannersen_US
dc.subjectEdith Whartonen_US
thesis.degree.namePh.D.en_US
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineEnglishen_US
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen_US
dc.contributor.advisorZwinger, Lynda M.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberDryden, Edgar A.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberDushane, Allisonen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberZwinger, Lynda M.en_US
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