This book, using poststructuralist approaches to literature, analyzes the specific way in which certain binary oppositions related to race, gender and sexual orientation are collapsed in the work of Jean Genet, the twentieth-century French writer and political activist. This work will appeal to scholars interested in French literature and drama, queer theory, and twentieth-century French thought. This work analyzes the specific way in which certain binary oppositions are collapsed in the work of Jean Genet, the twentieth-century French writer and political activist. The way in which Genet constructed characters is essential to a proper interpretation and understanding of character traits such as homo- and heterosexuality, blackness and whiteness, masculine and feminine identity. This book approaches the operation of language in Genet's texts through the lenses of deconstructionism, feminist theory, queer theory, and postcolonial theory. Though the work focuses on Genet, an addition to its appeal is made by the fact that it treats other major twentieth-century thinkers as well: Sartre, Derrida, Cixous, and Irigrary, among others.
Dr. Drew Jones is an Assistant Professor of French at Queens College CUNY. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin - Madison. Dr. Jones has published articles on Jean Genet and Jean Cocteau, and is currently at work on a book which will examine the writings and political activities of gay writers in France during World War II.
Preface by Lawrence R. Schehr; Acknowledgements; Introduction; Fiction/Truth: "Genet"; Sartre and "Genet"; Genets en fleur: Derrida; Masculine/Feminine: Characterization and Gender Identity in Notre-Dame-des-Fleurs; Character Construction in Notre-Dame-des Fleurs; The Flaming St. Divine; Black/White: Feminine Forces and the Subversion of Dominant Discourse in Les Negres; Feminine Writing and Subversive Mimicry; Playing with Mimesis: Les Negres; Masculine and Feminine as Forces in Theater; Colonizer/Colonized: The Role of Colonial Language in Les Paravents; Homo/Hetero: Naming and Sexual Identity in Querelle de Brest; Freedom and the Evasion of Sexual Identity; Homosexuality as Textual Construct; Conclusion - Jean Genet: Queer; Bibliography; Index.