First published in 1992, Sexual Sameness examines the differing textual strategies male and female writers have developed to celebrate homosexuality. Examining such writers as E.M. Forster, James Baldwin, Sylvia Townsend Warner and Audre Lourde, this wide-ranging book demonstrates how literature has been one of the few cultural spaces in which sexual outsiders have been able to explore forbidden desires.
From the humiliating trials of Oscar Wilde to the appalling stigmatisation of people living with AIDS, Sexual Sameness reveals the persistent homophobia that has until recently almost completely inhibited our understanding of lesbian and gay writing. In opening up homosexual literature to informed and objective methods of reading, Sexual Sameness will be of interest to a large lesbian and gay readership, as well as to students of gender studies, literary studies and the social sciences.
Table of Contents
Notes on contributors; Acknowledgments; 1. Introduction Joseph Bristow 2. The cultural politics of perversion: Augustine, Shakespeare, Freud and Foucault Jonathan Dollimore 3. ‘Poets and lovers evermore’: the poetry and journals of Michael Field Chris White 4. Wilde, Dorian Gray, and gross indecency Joseph Bristow 5. Forster’s self-erasure: Maurice and the scene of masculine love John Fletcher 6. What is not said: a study of textual inversion Dianna Collecott 7. ‘If I saw you would you kiss me?’: sapphism and the subversiveness of Virginia Woolf’s Orlando Sherron E. Knopp 8. Sylvia Townsend Warner and the counterplot of lesbian fiction Terry Castle 9. The African and the pagan in gay Black literature David Bergman 10. Who was afraid of Joe Orton Alan Sinfield 11. Constructing a lesbian poetic for survival: Broumas, Rukeser, H.D., Rich, Lorde Liz Yorke 12. Reading awry: Joan Nestle and the recontextualisation of heterosexuality Clare Whatling; Further reading; Notes; Index