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Published: 31 July 2020

256 Pages

9 x 6 inches

ISBN: 9781942954835

Also Available As:


Bookseller Code (06)

Writing the Survivor

The Rape Novel in Late Twentieth-Century American Fiction

Robin E. Field

Clemson University Press in association with Liverpool University Press

  • Writing the Survivor identifies a new genre of contemporary American fiction, the rape novel, which cuts powerfully across color lines to offer a unifying understanding of ethnic American fiction at the end of the twentieth century
  • Writing the Survivor rescripts the critical conversation about the representation of rape (the critical skepticism of the very possibility of understanding a victim's experience and then representing that experience due to the strong influence of deconstruction and other theories of textual instability in the 1980s and 1990s) by prioritizing the bodily experience of rape
  • This new genre, the rape novel, offers a bold new understanding of the relationship between form and content in late twentieth-century American literature; for the rape novel inextricably connects formal methods to social history and textual representation with bodily experience
  • In bringing together African American, Asian American, Latinx, Native American, and Anglo-American literary traditions, Writing the Survivor demonstrates how comparatist readings of ethnic American fiction offer a more unifying and comprehensive understanding of late twentieth-century American literature
  • Writing the Survivor explores how representations of male rape survivors in American literature of the 20th century reinforced rape myths of men being feminized and rape as a smarmy joke, but how new portrayals in the 21st century inspire sympathy and compassion, even when the survivors also become perpetrators of violence against others