Gender and Intersectionality

Detailed Table of Contents

Editorial
Uplabdhi Sangwan: "Jasmine" as a Fantasy
Abstract: The paper looks at Bharati Mukherjee’s Jasmine to assess the rendition of a “liberated woman” and finds it to be vague and insufficient on account of the inability of the heroine to break through, what Adrienne Rich insists are the political institutions of “heterosexuality” and “motherhood”. Emotional, economic or sexual alternatives that proffer new and fulfilling roles are conspicuously absent in the novel. The absence of these alternatives in Jasmine is juxtaposed to other powerful narratives by women of color, such as for example Alice Walker’s The Color Purple (1983) where such alternatives are explored. Jasmine concludes by invoking a fairy tale economic and emotional rescue of the colored heroine by white male figures, and in doing so the novel enacts, what Adrienne Rich calls the “lie” of “the romantic” in Western tradition. The conclusion appears fantastic because of Jasmine’s integration into the white society. Walker’s Black women, on the other hand, struggle to reclaim their dignity even within their own communities in a process that takes decades. The heroine’s search for an identity appears to be ultimately self-limiting and problematic as resolutions are sought within the conventional structures of gender, race and class.
Author's Bio: I am an Assistant Professor in English at Delhi University. My interest areas include Contemporary Novels in English, Gender Studies and Literary Theory. I have previously published a book chapter titled “Significance of Sisterhood and Lesbianism in Fiction of Women of Color” that appeared in Alice Walker’s The Color Purple (. Ed. Kheven LaGrone) published by Rodopi, New York. I completed my Mphil in English (2008), MA in English (2006) and BA in English (1995) from Delhi University.
Megan Condis,Kaitlin Marks-Dubbs, T.J. Tallie: Speaking Through 'Lard-Slicked Lips' - Fatness, Racism, and Narratives of Self-Control Encircling the Paula Deen Scandal
Abstract: This article represents the efforts of a disciplinarily diverse group of scholars (a pop culture critic, a feminist scholar who works on body image, and a historian who works on issues of race and ethnicity) to decode the multiple nasty turns we saw taken in conversations around Paula Deen scandal. The authors are invested in creating dialogues between our various disciplines in order to determine how and why Deen’s own body came to be used to rebuke her for her remarks, how sizeism came to stand in for a condemnation of racism.
Author's Bio: Megan Condis is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She works on gender discourse in popular culture including film, comics, and video games. She is also the Managing Editor for Resilience: A Journal of the Environmental Humanities. She is currently working on completing her dissertation, “The Politics of Gamers: Identity and Masculinity in the Age of Digital Media.” You can find her online at http://megancondis.wordpress.com/. Kaitlin Marks-Dubbs is a Ph.D. student in the Center for Writing Studies in the English Department at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is the author of "Bodies Under Construction: Rhetorical Tactics for Re-Scripting Rape" in Re/Framing Identifications, edited by Michelle Baliff. She is currently completing her dissertation, “Composing Bodies, Composing Ourselves: An Examination of Digital Writing Policies on Embodied Experience.” T.J. Tallie is a PhD candidate in the history department at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. As a critical historian of the British Empire and colonialism, he works specifically on the relationship between race, masculinity, and sovereignty in nineteenth-century colonial South Africa. He is completing his dissertation, "Limits of Settlement: Racialized Masculinity, Sovereignty, and the Imperial Project in Colonial Natal, 1850-1897."
Trevor Boffone: A "Wild Zone" of Her Own: Locating the Chicana Experience in the Theatre Works of Josefina López
Abstract: The present study focuses on the different psychological spaces that Chicana women must occupy in order to develop an oppositional consciousness and discourse through an analysis of three plays by Josefina López: Boyle Heights (2005), Detained in the Desert (2010), and Hungry Woman (2013). The “Wild Zone” theory as posited by Cordelia Candelaria in “The ‘Wild Zone’ Thesis as Gloss in Chicana Literary Study” serves as the primary theoretical lens due to its usefulness in an intersectional analysis of Chicana experience and identity, both in the Southwestern United States and abroad, by theorizing the separate cultural and political spaces, or zones, that women inhabit in society.
Author's Bio: Trevor Boffone is a doctorate student in Hispanic Studies with a focus on US Latin@ Literature at the University of Houston. His research centers on Contemporary Latin@ Theatre, Chicana Feminism(s), Women and Gender Studies, and Queer Theory. He has published academic articles on the theatre of Josefina López, Nilo Cruz, Carmen Peláez, and Ramón del Valle-Inclán.
Zoila Clark: Maxine Hong Kingston, Ghostbuster Feminist
Abstract: Maxine Hong Kingston is a first generation Chinese-American writer who became recognized after the publication of The Woman Warrior, Memoirs of a Girlhood among Ghosts in 1976. In this study, I argue that Kingston’s book of the uncanny draws on Chinese-American women’s writing in order to construct the role-model of a bicultural Ghostbuster feminist able to fight the ghosting patriarchal policies of the US. By contextualizing second wave feminism and women’s writing in the 1970s, we can observe that Kingston’s writing style is part of écriture feminine, and that this helped her overcome her bicultural uncanny experience.
Author's Bio: Zoila Clark holds a Ph.D. (2009) and a M.A. (2004) in Spanish from Florida International University, and a M.S. (1999) in TESOL from Nova Southeastern University. She is currently pursuing an MA in Women’s Studies at Florida Atlantic University. Her research focuses on Hispanic literature, film, and music, together with imagery related to gender, gothic, and postcolonial and decolonial cultural studies. She is the author of La sexualidad femenina: Reconceptualización surrealista y postmoderna por Cristina Escofet e Isabel Allende (Feminine Sexuality: a surrealist and postmodern reconceptualization of the works of Cristina Escofet and Isabel Allende) (2010) and has published extensively in refereed journals in the US, Spain, and Argentina. She is currently interested in the interplay between gender and the gothic as evidenced across a range of cultural and artistic media in different cultures. She was Editor-in-Chief of Hispanet Journal (Fall 2008- Spring 2013).
Ellen J. Stockstill (Review): Masculinity and the Expansion of Women’s Rights in Ben Griffin’s The Politics of Gender in Victorian Britain
Shu-Ju Ada Cheng (Review): "The Sex Lives of College Students: Two Decades of Attitudes and Behaviors."