Jean Walton's Fair Sex, Savage Dreams: Race, Psychoanalysis, Sexual PDF

By Jean Walton

In Fair intercourse, Savage Dreams Jean Walton examines the paintings of early feminist psychoanalytic writing to decipher in it the unacknowledged but foundational function of race. targeting the Nineteen Twenties and Thirties, a time whilst white ladies have been actively refashioning Freud’s problematical money owed of sexual subjectivity, Walton rereads particularly the writing of British analysts Joan Riviere and Melanie Klein, modernist poet H.D., the eccentric French analyst Marie Bonaparte, and anthropologist Margaret Mead.
Charting the fantasies of racial distinction in those women’s writings, Walton establishes that race—particularly in this period—was inseparable from bills of gender and sexuality. whereas arguing that those ladies remained particularly oblivious to the racial meanings embedded of their personal makes an attempt to rearticulate female sexuality, Walton makes use of those very blindspots to appreciate how race and intercourse are deeply imbricated within the structure of subjectivity. hard the thought that matters gather gender identities in isolation from racial ones, she hence demonstrates how white-centered psychoanalytic theories have shaped the foundation for extra modern feminist and queer explorations of delusion, hope, energy, and subjectivity.
Fair intercourse, Savage Dreams will attract students of psychoanalysis, literary and cinematic modernism, race stories, queer thought, feminist idea, and anthropology.

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Extra info for Fair Sex, Savage Dreams: Race, Psychoanalysis, Sexual Difference

Sample text

Apter concludes her brief look at the racial fantasy in Riviere by suggesting that the ‘‘lesson we might draw’’ from it is that ‘‘the chosen prototype of the masquerading woman is a problematic figure—abstracted from history and culture and blind to the psychosexual politics of racism’’ (91–92). As I have contended, however, it is precisely the way in which Riviere, and her masquerading woman, are ‘‘problematic’’ that makes them especially promising as prototypes for understanding how femininity has been constructed and played out within its particularly racialized contexts.

Up until this Masquerade and Reparation • 23 point, Riviere’s patient has been presented as either superficially heterosexual (gaining satisfaction in sexual relations with her husband only because her anxiety is thus allayed) or frigid. ’’∞≠ Moreover, Butler explains, this predicament is ‘‘produced by a matrix that accounts for all desire for women by subjects of whatever sex or gender as originating in a masculine, heterosexual position. The libido-asmasculine is the source from which all possible sexuality is presumed to come’’ (53).

Riviere notes that for this woman, ‘‘[w]omanliness . . could be assumed and worn as a mask, both to hide the possession of masculinity and to avert the reprisals expected if she was found to possess it—much as a thief will turn out his pockets and ask to be searched to prove that he has not the stolen goods’’ (38). Whereas she can turn her pockets out and show that she has no penis after all, the black man she fantasizes about cannot do so, and his horrific punishment will be, after all, his literal castration and death.

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