Book Announcement: The Medusa Gaze in Contemporary Women’s Fiction: Petrifying, Maternal and Redemptive

The Medusa Gaze in Contemporary Women’s Fiction: Petrifying, Maternal and Redemptive now available from Cambridge Scholars Publishing

9781443891486
Hardback, pp299, £61.99 / $104.95

Cambridge Scholars Publishing is pleased to announce the publication of The Medusa Gaze in Contemporary Women’s Fiction: Petrifying, Maternal and Redemptive, edited by Adriana Teresa Damascelli.

This book offers striking insights into the desires and frustrations of women through the narratives of impressive contemporary novelists. Crafting its analysis on the gaze as presented by Lacan and Sartre, the book demonstrates how the subject creates her own ego against her alter egos or hostile others in the mirrors facing her, offering insight into women’s powers and weaknesses. The first two mirroring chapters trace the women stalking its pages under a panoptic gaze, as they learn how to revert their look defiantly back onto others. Some win assurance through their own assertive gaze; others are stared down, reduced to psychic trauma, madness and even suicide beneath the demeaning force of the looks of others.

These magnetising gazes are turned against the reader, offering insights that take us through a carnival hall of mirrors. The book then goes on to show how androcentric views such as Freud’s perceive Medusa mothers as monstrous, splintering them from their daughters in the Electra syndrome. The efforts of mothers to nurture their children may be slighted as inadequate, with the mother’s nurture condemned as devouring. The following pair of chapters present Medusa and inspiring goddesses motivating and reverting evil through the ‘evil eye’ of their powerful gaze or inspirational force, or contrastingly condemn them as monstrous Gorgons, trapped in enmity, rivalry and rage. These literary discussions illuminate women’s force in the writings of Angela Carter, Toni Morrison, Sylvia Plath, Margaret Atwood, A.S. Byatt, Iris Murdoch, Jeanette Winterson, Jean Rhys and Michèle Roberts. This smorgasbord of authors and their works exemplify English, American and Canadian writing, African American and Caribbean, including realistic, social narrative and magical realist writings, delving into re-interpretations of narratives, tales of the past and visions of dystopian futures.

To read a full summary of the book and to read a 30-page sample extract, which includes the table of contents, please visit the following link:

http://www.cambridgescholars.com/the-medusa-gaze-in-contemporary-womens-fiction


All Cambridge Scholars authors and contributors are entitled to a 40% discount on this title, to claim this simply enter the author discount code on the My Order page after adding the book to your basket from the link above. For further information about the author discount, please contact admin@cambridgescholars.com.


The Medusa Gaze in Contemporary Women’s Fiction: Petrifying, Maternal and Redemptive can be purchased directly from Cambridge Scholars, through Amazon and other online retailers, or through our global network of distributors. Our partners include Bertram, Gardners, Baker & Taylor, Ingram, YBP, Inspirees and MHM Limited. An e-book version will be available for purchase through the Google Play store in due course.

For further information on placing an order for this title, please contact orders@cambridgescholars.com.

About the Author

Gillian M. E. Alban engages with women in her literary analyses, exploring the theme of mythic women as it emerges in contemporary literature. Her publications include Melusine the Serpent Goddess in A. S. Byatt’s Possession and in Mythology (2003). She has elaborated her insights through a lifetime of enjoying the study and teaching of literature in Istanbul, where she lives and works.

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