Gender Studies | Seminar in Gender Studies: Women Writers, Subversion and the Erotic Imaginary
G498 | 31436 | Horton-Stallings


Through our study of the female body, eros, creativity/creation, and
utopian/ dystopian communities we will interrogate the systematic
dismissal and resistance to political, medical, and social
institutions.  The primary texts will consists of literary erotica,
popular erotic fiction and non-fiction, film, and critical essays.
The central issues of revolution, pleasure, and the body will be
accompanied by other theoretical concerns such as the role of the
reader versus the producer of these images; the sexuality, gender,
race, and class of the writer(s) and consumers; the relationship
between subcultures and mainstream culture; the use of devices such
as intertextuality, mimicry and appropriation; print texts versus
digital texts: and the importance of genre. Questions that we will
address in the class:  Is there a difference or distinction between
the pornographic imagination and uses of the erotic?  How do
cultural and social movements influence the style, aesthetics, and
ideologies presented in their representations of eros, sexuality,
and pornography? Is there an aesthetic or artistic measure of good
erotica or pornography?  How does answering such questions offer us
insights into seeing how writers challenge religious doctrines,
legal precedents, and medical discourse about women’s bodies,
desire, and gender and sexual identity overall?  Tentative authors
include: Anais Nin, Pauline Reage, Kathy Acker, Julie Hilden, Jill
Nelson, Fionna Zedde,  Zane, Nedjma, Audre Lorde, Susan Sontag, and
others.