Since the late s, queer studies and theory have become vital to the intellectual and political life of the United States. This has been due, in no small degree. BOOK REVIEW. Epistemology of the Closet by Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick*. Reviewed by Mark Reschke**. In the s, homophobic attacks from many fronts. : Epistemology of the Closet, Updated with a New Preface ( ): Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick: Books.

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However, not all reviews were positive.

I concede that this opinion comes from an undergrad who has seldom encountered literary theory in a classroom setting shame, shame, shamebut from what I gather–“affect” is intuitive.

Hardwickwhere the majority decision cites eistemology seemingly unbroken line of prohibition of sodomy encompassing the Bible, Roman law, Churh law, British common law, and the laws of the various colonies, later US States.

This book will demand your full attention. Hardwickwhere the majority decision cites a seemingly unbro As much as this book has been named as one of the founding works of the queer theory and discourse, it is not dull and is still relevant in it subject today. The introductory chapters were especially well written and fleshed out an influential cultural and social criticism.

In so doing, she has produced an essential antihomophobic text, the one every straight person had better read.

This is a very accurate assessment, both in terms of content and regarding the form of Epistemology of the Closet. The basis for the answer to this question comes from Sedgwick’s understanding and examination of queer theory, which she describes for her readers. The words inside, which introduce in Butler’s inimitable style the idea of gender as performance, have best been summarised, I think, by the internet meme of a photograph of Butler delivering a lecture, overlaid with the words ” Gender — yer ‘doing’ it “.

This book addresses the idea that there are two views that guide sexual identity and desire: The closet functions much like an “outer secret, the secret of having a secret” —if one has a secret knowl In Epistemology of the ClosetEve Kosofsky Sedgwick explores the epistemology of the closet, the dominant metaphor for understanding gay male identities in the 20th century.

Order by newest oldest recommendations. To prove this obvious but overlooked fact, Sedgwick lists a series of things “that can differentiate even people of identical gender, race, nationality, class, and ‘sexual orientation’ — each one of which, however, if taken seriously as pure differenceretains the unaccounted-for potential to disrupt many forms of the available thinking about sexuality”.


Additionally, she theorizes that “male homosexual panic became the normal condition of male heterosexual entitlement” I see a lot of people taking issue with this book because it’s difficult to read, and so I want to dispel a misunderstanding right up front: According to Eva Kosofsky, the construction of ‘homosexual man’ has been a presiding term of the 20th century, one that has the same, primary importance for all modern Western identity and social organization as do the more traditionally visible cruxes of gender, class, and race.

The book pics up again with the last two chapters which come back to the brilliant analysis that appeared in the introductory chapters. Threads collapsed expanded unthreaded. This book examines the emotions provoked by the AIDS epidemic that was widespread at the time.

More than any other book, Epistemology of the Closet has probably had the greatest influence on geographical research on sexualities. This is the only chapter in whuch lesbianism is the focus; through Albertine’s fluid and less structured homosexual potential, Sedgwick projects a more modern point of view around homosexuality as a whole.

The notion of the important- perhaps even revolutionary- of female readers of Proust was extremely interesting and one I wished had not be tacked right at the end. A universalizing view affirms that all persons are of equal worth, though they may differ in many ways, and that an understanding of homosexuality is important for people of all sexual persuasions.

It reads like a collection of five essays, and blends gender and sexuality studies with literary criticism by examining how novels written at the turn of the 20th century reflected the construction of “the closet” through their subtext but ultimate silence on a character’s sexuality. In the ancient past, homosexuality was a fairly common and accepted passtime, though socially constructed in such a way.

Epistemology of the Closet – Wikipedia

But Oooooooh what a difficult read! Her introductory 67 page! As Christians, I believe this is important for us to understand. You dip into the Phaedrus often?

About Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick. In order to frame much of her discussion, Sedgwick looks towards historical and social examples, and of course, she looks at literary references.


Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. But, as in her other work, the insights that she eventually reaches Well, Eve Sedgwick is brilliant, as always, although her literary analysis is certainly a much lass breezier read than the amazing and much-assigned introduction and first chapter of this book.

In this way, Sedgwick’s book serves as an example of how disciplines can be incorporated into discourse, a concept that makes this book, along with Sedgwick’s other literary-academic experiments, well worth while.

Proust and the Spectacle of the Closet 2 Being raised in Massachusetts in the middle class, my perception of acceptance is likely to be pretty skewed toward liberal notions of equality, acceptance, etc.

Roll over, Beethoven, and tell Tchaikovsky the news.

Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick – Archive – Epistemology of the Closet

Her theory is based heavily in a post-Foucault structure with a post-Stonewall, post-AIDS crisis lens through which to view the pluralities of sexuality. English Literature and Male Homosocial Desire She is wearing a pretty dress, and an alice band; a toothy grin lights up her face.

In fact, on my second reading of these chapters, I tried to read them as if I were not familiar with their works, they are still accessible.

On publication, the book attracted attention from the publication magazine The Nationepistsmology described it as closdt remarkable work of mind and spirit”, in which “the literary analyses are excellent”. This comes to show the why we stayed suppressed for so long as part of the community that we are. What I find amazing in my updated edition fromis what had happened since the book’s first conception at the end of the s – and this last edition.

Epistemology of the Closet

And they get better every time I read them. Beyond the quality of the close readings, Sedgwick establishes theoretical formulations that deserve endless consideration. Nov 11, Zacharygs rated it really liked it. Confusing to read about all the embodied denials and ignorances of privilege. The book, of course, demands patience. Selected pages Title Page.

Feb 22, John Gardner rated it it was ok.