Issue Details: First known date: 2010 2010
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'Traditionally, although "women have always written about men," men's bodies have been dealt with circumspectly, if at all. Hence, facial features and general size and comportment are often described and used as aspects of characterisation, but men's bodies are rarely depicted and explored in any particular or extensive way. Peter Brooks ties the customary scarcity of men's bodies in women's fiction to gendered divisions within visual culture, asserting, "vision is a typically male prerogative, and its object of fascination the woman's body, in a cultural model so persuasive that many women novelists don't reverse its vectors." Recently, however - and along with the increasing visibility of men's bodies in popular culture - there has emerged a growing tendency for women writers (and artists) to depict men's bodies. This chapter explores a significant example of this paradigm shift occurring in contemporary fiction by Australian women, focusing on three representative texts: Last of the Sane Days (1999) by Fiona Capp, The Architect (2000) by Jillian Watkinson, and Miranda (1998) by Wendy Scarfe.' (Author's introduction 185)

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    y Women Constructing Men : Female Novelists and Their Male Characters, 1750-2000 Sarah Frantz (editor), Katharina Rennhak (editor), Lanham : Lexington Books , 2010 Z1883851 2010 anthology poetry 'Female novelists have always invested as much narrative energy in constructing their male characters - heroes and villains - as in envisioning their female protagonists, but this fact has received very little scholarly attention to date. In Women Constructing Men, scholars from Australia, Canada, Germany, Great Britain and the United States begin to sketch the outline of a new literary history of women writing men in the English-speaking world from the eighteenth century until today. By rediscovering forgotten texts, rereading novels by high canonical female authors, refocusing the interest in well-known novels, and analyzing contemporary narrative constructions of masculinity, the contributing scholars demonstrate that female authors create male characters every bit as complex as their male counterparts. Using a variety of theoretical models and coming to an equal variety of conclusions, the essays collected in Women Constructing Men skilfully demonstrate that the topic of female-authored masculinities not only allows scholars to re-read and re-discover almost every novel ever written by a woman writer, but also triggers reflections on a host of theoretical questions of gender and genre. In re-examining these male characters across literary history, these articles extend the feminist question of 'Who has the authority to create a female character?' to 'Who has the authority to create any character?'. ' (Publisher's blurb)
    Lanham : Lexington Books , 2010
    pg. 185-206
Last amended 31 Aug 2012