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What at first glance looks like a product of the inadvertent double booking of a convention hall turns out to be an initial exploration of the significance in English literary texts of the female non-biological ancestor as creator, an erotic aesthetic that celebrates joy not geared to production and reproduction, and the love between female literary and mythological ancestors. Examines the work of Wilde, Carpenter, Shelley, Shakespeare, Michael Field, Virginia Woolf, and others. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Academic literary criticism can often be a tough read. Luckily, this is not the case with Ruth Vanita's Sappho and the Virgin Mary, a compelling look at how these twin images of sex and celibacy--both outside the world of men--have brought the idea and meaning of lesbianism to British writing. Vanita has a likable style that makes the literature she explicates-- Keats, the Brontes, Christina Rossetti, E. M. Forster, George Eliot--live again in a new light. Beautifully argued and intelligently written, Sappho and the Virgin Mary surprises us on every page, making us reexamine previous assumptions in a new light.About the Author:
RUTH VANITA is associate professor of English at Delhi University.
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