Getting Personal: Feminist Occasions and Other Autobiographical Acts

Nancy K. Miller, Author Routledge $0 (164p) ISBN 978-0-415-90323-3
What does it mean to speak as a feminist? How does the assumption of that role intersect with one's life history? These two questions are at the heart of Miller's ( Changing the Subject ) new collection of essays and occasional pieces, mainly engendered by ``the spectacle of a significant number of critics getting personal in their writing . . . a sign of a turning point in the history of critical practices.'' The writings that ensue are, for the most part, an engaging reply to the anti-feminist backlash in the academy and the ongoing war over the place of critical theory. Miller asks, ``Do you have to turn your back on theory in order to speak with a non-academic voice?'' She manages to balance the two here; most of the works are accessible to the general reader. (The piece on why she gave up teaching French is very funny and will strike a responsive chord in many ex-Francophiles.) Miller is particularly eloquent when addressing the question of what feminist scholars ``need to master'' to survive in the patriarchal institutions of the academy, concluding with an acknowledgment of the contradiction inherent in considering the impact of a writer's gender in an era that proclaims ``the Death of the Author.''p. 47 (July)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1991
Release date: 01/01/1991
Paperback - 164 pages - 978-0-415-90324-0
Open Ebook - 184 pages - 978-1-317-96093-5
Ebook - 184 pages - 978-1-317-96091-1
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