Reading Through Abjection

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Title: Reading Through Abjection
Author: Howsam, Melissa Anne
Advisors: Dr. Sharon Setzer, Committee Member
Dr. Jon Thompson, Committee Member
Dr. Deborah Wyrick, Committee Chair
Abstract: In this thesis, I read through Kristeva's theory of the abject as a way of interpreting Cristina Garcia's Dreaming in Cuban (1993) and interrogating common psychoanalytic readings of Christina Rossetti's Goblin Market (1859) and Bram Stoker's Dracula (1897). The purpose of each of these readings has been to gauge the usefulness of Kristeva's theory as a critical tool and to determine what it allows us to achieve as literary critics and, even, as readers. Although Kristeva is clear about her desire to see women liberate themselves from the confining roles ascribed to them by psychoanalytic theory and patriarchal norms, she is not clear about how her theory can be used. Therefore, I apply her theory, specifically that of the abject, to these three fundamentally different texts in order to both investigate its usefulness and to determine what is, if anything, the triumphant result of its application (in terms of feminism).
Date: 2003-11-24
Degree: MA
Discipline: English

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