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Uneven Developments
Author: Mary Poovey

ISBN: 9780226675305
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 296
Published: 17 December 1987
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 1.91 x 16.51 x 23.5
Description:
Mary Poovey's "The Proper Lady and the Woman Writer" has become a standard text in feminist literary discourse. In "Uneven Developments" Poovey turns to broader historical concerns in an analysis of how notions of gender shape ideology.
Asserting that the organization of sexual difference is a social, not natural, phenomenon, Poovey shows how representations of gender took the form of a binary opposition in mid-Victorian culture. She then reveals the role of this opposition in various discourses and institutions--medical, legal, moral, and literary. The resulting oppositions, partly because they depended on the subordination of one term to another, were always unstable. Poovey contends that this instability helps explain why various institutional versions of binary logic developed unevenly. This unevenness, in turn, helped to account for the emergence in the 1850s of a genuine oppositional voice: the voice of an organized, politicized feminist movement.
Drawing on a wide range of sources--parliamentary debates, novels, medical lectures, feminist analyses of work, middle-class periodicals on demesticity--Poovey examines various contro...

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