Cover: Beyond Feminist Aesthetics: Feminist Literature and Social Change, from Harvard University PressCover: Beyond Feminist Aesthetics in PAPERBACK

Beyond Feminist Aesthetics

Feminist Literature and Social Change

Add to Cart

Product Details

PAPERBACK

$37.00 • £29.95 • €33.50

ISBN 9780674068957

Publication Date: 01/01/1989

Short

240 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

World

Beyond Feminist Aesthetics has a dual focus. First, Rita Felski gives a critical account of current American and European feminist literary theory, and second, she offers an analysis of contemporary fiction by women, drawing in particular on the genres of the autobiographical confession and the novel of self-discovery, in order to show that this literature raises questions for feminism that cannot be answered in terms of a purely gender based analysis.

Felski argues that the idea of a feminist aesthetic is a nonissue that feminists have needlessly pursued; she suggests, in contrast, that it is impossible to speak of “masculine” and “feminine,” “subversive” and “reactionary” literary forms in isolation from the social conditions of their production and reception. The political value of such works of literature from the standpoint of feminism can be determined only by an investigation of their social functions and effects in relation to the interests of women in a particular historical context. This leads her to argue for an interdisciplinary approach to the analysis of literature which can integrate literary and social theory, and to develop such an approach by drawing upon the model of a feminist counter-public sphere.

Rita Felski has produced a closely reasoned, stimulating book that creates a new framework for discussing the relationship between literature and feminist politics. It will interest students and teachers of women’s studies, comparative literature, cultural studies, and fiction.

From Our Blog

9780674238084

Who We Might Have Been, and Who We Will Become

Who among us hasn’t considered what our lives would be like if we had taken alternate paths, made different decisions? Storytellers of every stripe write of the lives we didn’t have, says Andrew H. Miller, author of On Not Being Someone Else: Tales of Our Unled Lives. As we live through a worldwide pandemic, the ideas of what might have been are even more appealing. Much like the adolescents on the verge of adulthood in Sally Rooney’s novel Normal People, Miller tells us, we wait to see what comes next.