Allegories of Gender and Class as Discourses of Political Desire


in Domestic Allegories of Political Desire

Published in print September 1996 | ISBN: 9780195108576
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199855094 | DOI:
Allegories of Gender and Class as Discourses of Political Desire

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This chapter begins with the characterization to the intended audience of the domestic novels being mentioned. The author recovers the politics of desire in these works by reading the gendered discourses of domestic civility. These are allegorical discourses of citizenship and gender until the ratification of the Twenty-second Amendment in 1920. Putting these novels into their historical context dealing with racially contested and gender-restricted agency, the author recuperates the women-centered political agency in the novels of several women including Katherine Tillman, Emma Kelley-Hawkins, and Frances Harper, among others. This chapter focuses on what audience is targeted by the post-reconstruction novels of black women, the politics of desire, domestic narrative as a racial discourse, and the heroine as an agent of racial desire.

Keywords: allegories; political desire; domestic narratives; racial discourse; racial desire

Chapter.  12659 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Literature

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