Lesbian Fiction as Historical Fiction: Gender, Nationalism, and Sexual Politics in the South Asian Novel

Lesbian Fiction as Historical Fiction: Gender, Nationalism, and Sexual Politics in the South Asian Novel

Date/Time
Date(s) - 05/14/2013
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Location
PSU campus, Women’s Resource Center, Mongomery Hall basement
1802 SW 10th & Montgomery St --Portland

Drawing on her recent research, Dr. Nair will discuss two Indian novels about lesbian desire: Abha Dawesar’s Babyji (2005), and Manju Kapur’s A Married Woman (2003). She is particularly interested in the novels’ turn from sexual desire to political history, as the protagonists become involved in caste and religious politics, and their sexual relationships end. This turn is captured by the vacillation of literary form between Bildungsroman/ domestic novel and historical fiction. This formal instability, she argues, stages the gendered tensions inherent in imagining a politics of the body qua sexual subjectivity and identity within a socialist and secular nationalist body politic.

Sri Nair is Assistant Professor in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Portland State University. Her research focuses on interpreting globalization from the perspective of gender and sexual ideologies and practices. Her current work includes an ethnographic study of transnationalism and diaspora via the gendered experiences of South Asian seniors; and a study of global white masculinities. Sri teaches feminist and critical race theory courses in addition to topics on masculinity and social identity and popular culture in the U.S.

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.