Secret Selves: Confession and Same-Sex Desire in Victorian Autobiography - Confession and Same-Sex Desire in Victorian Autobiography - Oliver S. Buckton (1998)
ISBN 9780807847022
Genre History, Herstory
Subject English prose literature - History and criticism; Autobiography; Homosexuality and literature - History; Gay men - Biography; Male authors, English - Biography; Gay mens' writings, English - History and criticism; Confession in literature; Desire in literature
Publisher University of North Carolina Press
Publication Date June 1998
Format Paperback (224 x 136 mm)
Language eng
Plot
Focusing on the representation of same-sex desire in Victorian autobiographical writing, Oliver Buckton offers readings of works by influential figures in late-19th-century literature and culture. Combining research, historical analysis, and contemporary theories of autobiography, gender and sexual identity, he provides studies of confessional narratives by Edward Carpenter, John Henry Newman, John Addington Symonds, Oscar Wilde, and, in an epilogue, E.M. Forster. By examining the "confessional" elements of these writings, Buckton brings "secrecy" into focus as a central and productive component of autobiographical discourse. He challenges the view of secrecy as the suppression of information, instead using the term to suggest an oscillation between authorial self-disclosure and silence or reserve - a strategy for arousing the reader's interest and establishing a relation based on shared knowledge while deferring or displacing the revelation of potentially incriminating and scandalous desires. Though their disclosures of same-sex desire jeopardized the cultural privilege granted these writers by Victorian codes of authorship and masculinity, their use of secrecy, Buckton shows, allowed them to protect themselves from Victorian stigma and to challenge prevailing constructions of sexual identity.
Personal Details
Collection Status In Collection
Index 482
Rating 0
Read It Yes
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Product Details
LoC Classification PR788.A95B83 1998
Dewey 828/.80809492
Cover Price $21.95
No. of Pages 270