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Sororophobia : Differences among Women in Literature and Culture - Helena Michie

Sororophobia

Differences among Women in Literature and Culture

Hardcover Published: 28th May 1992
ISBN: 9780195073874
Number Of Pages: 224

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This book looks at how differences among women have been textually represented at a variety of historical moments and in a variety of cultural contexts, including Victorian mainstream fiction, African-American mulatto novels, late twentieth-century lesbian communities, and contemporary country music. Sororophobia designates the complex and shifting relations between women's attempts to identify with other women and their often simultaneous desire to establish and retain difference. Michie argues for the centrality to feminism of a paradigm that moves beyond celebrations of identity and sisterhood to a more nuanced notion of women's relations with other women which may include such uncomfortable concepts as envy, jealousy, and competition as well as more institutionalized ideas of difference such as race and class. Chapters on literature are interspersed by "inter-chapters" on the choreography of sameness and difference among women in popular culture.

"In a time when culture depicts women either at each other's throats or joined in cheery, uncomplicated sisterhood, Michie's subtle and original probing of women's relations with each other is especially welcome."--Virginia Quarterly Review "Twenty years ago 'sisterhood' was synonymous with feminism. Shortly thereafter the term dropped out of usage, as feminists began to take stock of the contradictions behind the ideality. Helena Michie is the first feminist theorist to fix her attention on the shadows lurking behind the sunny assertion of sisterhood. Strong, subtle, original, and careful, Sororophobia takes a shockingly honest look at relations between women as they appear in theory and culture. What she finds will affect feminist theory for years to come."--Jane Gallop, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee "Offers an important revisionist account of the role and value of "sisterhood" as an organizing rubric for feminist theory and politics....[Michie's] work has particular relevance for gay and lesbian studies, and especially for lesbian feminist theories of sisterhood, a lesbian continuum, and the history of female erotic friendship."--Lesbian and Gay Studies Newsletter "With its painfully close examination of the divisions among women--whether of race, color, class, sexuality, or nationality--Sororophobia could not have been an easy book to write. Its success is a tribute to Michie's ability to write respectfully of women no matter what choices they make or how different they are from one another or from her....Michie's book will make troublesome but insightful reading. In these days of flamboyant performativity, its sincerity deserves respect."--American Literature "Responding to a society both fascinated and repelled by diversity, Michie's major contribution to American studies lies in [her] ability to thread sameness and difference through...divergent aspects of literature, art, music, cinema, dance, and life. Furthermore, without demeaning or substantially weakening feminist critique, she brings it into a real world not explained in such a Pollyanna-esque fashion as the sisterhood mode."--Journal of the American Studies Association of Texas "In a time when culture depicts women either at each other's throats or joined in cheery, uncomplicated sisterhood, Michie's subtle and original probing of women's relations with each other is especially welcome."--Virginia Quarterly Review "Twenty years ago 'sisterhood' was synonymous with feminism. Shortly thereafter the term dropped out of usage, as feminists began to take stock of the contradictions behind the ideality. Helena Michie is the first feminist theorist to fix her attention on the shadows lurking behind the sunny assertion of sisterhood. Strong, subtle, original, and careful, Sororophobia takes a shockingly honest look at relations between women as they appear in theory and culture. What she finds will affect feminist theory for years to come."--Jane Gallop, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee "Offers an important revisionist account of the role and value of "sisterhood" as an organizing rubric for feminist theory and politics....[Michie's] work has particular relevance for gay and lesbian studies, and especially for lesbian feminist theories of sisterhood, a lesbian continuum, and the history of female erotic friendship."--Lesbian and Gay Studies Newsletter "With its painfully close examination of the divisions among women--whether of race, color, class, sexuality, or nationality--Sororophobia could not have been an easy book to write. Its success is a tribute to Michie's ability to write respectfully of women no matter what choices they make or how different they are from one another or from her....Michie's book will make troublesome but insightful reading. In these days of flamboyant performativity, its sincerity deserves respect."--American Literature "Responding to a society both fascinated and repelled by diversity, Michie's major contribution to American studies lies in [her] ability to thread sameness and difference through...divergent aspects of literature, art, music, cinema, dance, and life. Furthermore, without demeaning or substantially weakening feminist critique, she brings it into a real world not explained in such a Pollyanna-esque fashion as the sisterhood mode."--Journal of the American Studies Association of Texas "[Michie's] skill as a textual critic along with the richness and variety of the terrain she traverses are keys to her success."--Novel (Brown University) "A thoughtful meditation on the problems of female identity and difference within the family."--Victorian Studies

Introductionp. 3
"There Is No Friend Like a Sister": Sisterhood as Sexual Differencep. 15
Inter-Chapter: "That Stormy Sisterhood": Portrait of the Brontesp. 51
"Another Woman in Your Shape": Sexual and Class Duplicity in Sensation Fictionp. 58
Inter-Chapter: "Mama He's Crazy": The Juddsp. 89
Writing Lesbian Differencep. 101
Inter-Chapter: Eliminating the Other Woman: The Excremental Fatal Attractionp. 131
"And Now She Was Different": Sexuality and Differentiation Among Black Women in Quicksand, Passing, and Sulap. 137
Inter-Chapter: Between Two Carmens: Olympic Ice-Skating and the Choreography of Othernessp. 169
The Colleague and the Washerwoman: The Other Woman in Feminist Theoryp. 175
Inter-Chapter: Elizabeth and Helenap. 199
Notesp. 203
Creditsp. 209
Indexp. 211
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780195073874
ISBN-10: 0195073878
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 224
Published: 28th May 1992
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 21.59 x 13.97  x 1.75
Weight (kg): 0.41