The Nun, The Priest, and the Pornographer: Scripting Rape in Maria Monk’s Awful Disclosures

May 1, 2013

[1] In the early nineteenth century, lurid tales of imprisoned and sexually violated nuns entertained and outraged Protestant Americans. The most famous and popular of these tales was Awful Disclosures of the Hotel Dieu Nunnery ostensibly written by Maria Monk about her experiences in the Montreal convent. Awful Disclosures tells...

Human Rights and the “African Village”: Ousmane Sembène’s Moolaadé

April 1, 2013

[1] Talal Asad begins his essay “What Do Human Rights Do? An Anthropological Enquiry” with the following question: “In the torrent of reporting on human rights in recent years far more attention is given to human rights violations in the non-Western world than in Euro-America. How should we explain this...

Soldiers of Feeling: Masculinity and Patriotism in Innes Munro’s Military Memoirs

Sept. 1, 2012

[1] In the spring of 1789, the impeachment of former East India Company president Warren Hastings for war crimes in India was entering its second year. The outbreak of revolutionary violence in France was still a few months in the future. And a narrative appeared by Innes Munro, a Scottish...

Phallic Nationalism: Limits of Male Homosocial Desire in A Spy on Mother Midnight

Aug. 1, 2012

[1] In this essay, I am interested in how changing expectations of masculinity are reflected in the erotic text A Spy on Mother Midnight; or, the Templar Metamorphosed and parts two and three of that text, printed the same year, A Continuation of Mr. F—‘s Adventures in Petty-Coats and A...

The Gender Entrapment of Neoliberal Development

March 1, 2012

Introduction: The new folk devils [1] In Policing the Crisis: Mugging, the State, and Law and Order, their classic application of cultural studies, political economy, and critical race studies to the interrogation of "crime," Stuart Hall and his co-authors from the Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies at the University of...

Trifles, Abominations, and Literary Gossip: Gendered Rhetoric and Nineteenth-Century Scrapbooks

Feb. 1, 2012

We Perceive, by the last London Atlas, that scrapbooks and albums are going entirely out of fashion in England. This is one of those foreign examples, which, we trust, will be enthusiastically followed here. We give this information thus early for the government of misses in their teens, scribblers of...

Queering Couplehood: Robert & John Allerton and Historical Perspectives on Kinship

Jan. 3, 2012

[1] On March 4, 1960, Robert Allerton became a father. He was 86 at the time and his newly adopted son, John Wyatt Gregg, was 60. They had met 38 years previously at a "Father-Son" fraternity banquet at the University of Illinois where the single and childless Allerton, 49, had...

Bawdy Technologies and the Birth of Ectoplasm

Sept. 1, 2011

[1] By the late nineteenth century, Spiritualism, a religious movement that promised communication with the dead through spirit mediums, had attracted a broad range of prominent followers like the American suffragist Victoria Woodhull, the British naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace, and the beloved creator of Sherlock Holmes, Arthur Conan Doyle. Although...

Cross-cultural Identification, Neoliberal Feminism, and Afghan Women

April 1, 2011

[1] Soon after the U.S. attacked Afghanistan in October 2001, the abject figure of the burqa-clad woman awaiting freedom was publicized by the State Department as a major justification for the war. This recycling of a familiar nineteenth-century colonial narrative of saving brown women was accompanied by the renewed popularity...

Getting The Girl: Wittig and Zeig’s Trojan Horse

Nov. 1, 2010

Introduction: Situating Monique Wittig [1] Following Monique Wittig’s sudden death in 2003 there has been a flurry of criticism paying homage to the importance of her work, rightly situating it as a crucial contribution to gender and sexuality studies. In 2007 GLQ produced a special issue entitled “Monique Wittig: At...

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