Against the Closet: identity, political longing, and black by Aliyyah Abdur-Rahman

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By Aliyyah Abdur-Rahman

In Against the Closet, Aliyyah I. Abdur-Rahman interrogates and demanding situations cultural theorists' interpretations of sexual transgression in African American literature. She argues that, from the mid-nineteenth century during the 20th, black writers used depictions of erotic transgression to contest renowned theories of id, pathology, nationwide belonging, and racial distinction in American tradition. Connecting metaphors of sexual transgression to express old classes, Abdur-Rahman explains how tropes akin to sadomasochism and incest illuminated the psychodynamics of specific racial accidents and instructed sorts of social fix and political redress from the time of slavery, via post-Reconstruction and the civil rights and black strength activities, to the overdue 20th century.

Abdur-Rahman brings black feminist, psychoanalytic, severe race, and poststructuralist theories to undergo on literary genres from slave narratives to technology fiction. examining works by way of African American writers, together with Frederick Douglass, Pauline Hopkins, Harriet Jacobs, James Baldwin, and Octavia Butler, she indicates how literary representations of transgressive sexuality expressed the longings of African americans for person and collective freedom. Abdur-Rahman contends that these representations have been basic to the improvement of African American kinds of literary expression and modes of political intervention and cultural self-fashioning.

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