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Intimacy, Shame, and the Closet in James Baldwin’s Giovanni’s Room
Monica B. Pearl

This essay’s close interrogation of James Baldwin’s 1956 novel Giovanni’s Room allows us to see one aspect of how sexual shame functions: it shows how shame exposes anxiety not only about the feminizing force of homosexuality, but about how being the object of the gaze is feminizing—and therefore shameful. It also shows that the paradigm of the closet is not the metaphor of privacy and enclosure on one hand and openness and liberation on the other that it is commonly thought to be, but instead is a site of illusory control over whether one is available to be seen and therefore humiliated by being feminized. Further, the essay reveals the paradox of denial, where one must first know the thing that is at the same time being disavowed or denied. The narrative requirements of fictions such as Giovanni’s Room demonstrate this, as it requires that the narrator both know, in order to narrate, and not know something at the same time.

James Baldwin Review
John Potvin

have dominated our understanding of the style moderne. Additionally, along with this ubiquitous design and visual culture, the male physique lent substance and meaning to a rather fraught corporeal and representational landscape in which curvilinear effeminacy and angular machismo, muscular prowess and aesthetic acumen as well as fashion and fitness were not only mutually exclusive but also importantly could only be embodied in a single form, object, performance or cultural expression. This resulted in a seemingly ambiguous and ambivalent gender performance for the

in Deco Dandy
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Melanie Tebbutt

(especially by elite males) of all things “feminine” ’ and provided an important context for how working-class boys and young men were perceived in the inter-war years when, as we shall see, youth acquired a complex new significance as a touchstone for many social and cultural changes.89 Not only did youth become a cipher for broader modernising trends in the 1920s and 1930s, but it also encapsulated many broader fears of national effeminacy as contemporaries focused on young women’s economic and cultural visibility as consumers and workers in retail and clerical jobs, in

in Being boys
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Emma Vickers

discernible impact on the classification of bodies between 1914 and 1918. By extension, there is no proof that the doctors employed on the medical boards possessed the skills to identify and label the queer recruit, especially since they were primed to look for physical rather than moral degeneracy. The outbreak of the First World War, and the national emergency that ensued, drowned out debates surrounding effeminacy, decadence and same-­sex desire, debates that had been instigated by the public trials and prosecution of Oscar Wilde in 1895.12 Although there were certainly

in Queen and country
Marie Helena Loughlin

as indicating the rise of new forms of ‘homosexuality’, involving markers of transvestism and effeminacy, and indicating ‘a radical extension of the meaning of homosexuality’ (Bray, Homosexuality 88–9); the largely ‘socially diffused homosexuality’ of the Renaissance and seventeenth century changed profoundly, becoming a ‘continuing culture’, with new material markers, such as ‘clothes, gestures, language, particular buildings and public places’ that came to connote ‘homosexuality’ for the subculture’s participants and for its observers in the larger society (92

in Same-Sex Desire in Early Modern England, 1550–1735
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The Age of Consent controversy, 1891
Mrinalini Sinha

consummation of child-marriage among ‘effeminate’ natives preserved a certain ambivalence towards the reform of orthodox Hindu patriarchy. This distinction both limited the nature of the challenge to orthodox Hindu patriarchy and associated the challenge more narrowly with the ‘effeminacy’ of the Bengali male. When Lansdowne sent Scoble’s proposals for comment to local officials in 1890, the reports of the

in Colonial masculinity
The Ilbert Bill controversy, 1883–84
Mrinalini Sinha

controversy was not simply to consolidate traditional racial and gender hierarchies. Rather, the true significance of colonial masculinity in the Ilbert Bill controversy was precisely in rearticulating traditional racial and gender hierarchies to preserve imperial interests in a new guise. At the first, and perhaps most obvious level, the stereotype of ‘effeminacy’ performed important ideological

in Colonial masculinity
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Lust, luxury and empire in John Fletcher and Philip Massinger’s The False One
Domenico Lovascio

). The False One therefore dramatises a set of early modern anxieties regarding the peril of feminisation embodied by erotic relationships infused with excessive passion for all men, but especially for rulers and men of war, insofar as such relationships were perceived as likely to ‘disrupt the very groundwork of cultural conceptions that define[d] the essence of masculinity in strict self-discipline and psychic disavowals’, as Gary Spear points out. 12 Intemperance and lack of self-governance were regarded as signs of effeminacy according to a frame of mind borrowed

in The genres of Renaissance tragedy
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Artifice as resistance
John Potvin

embodied as we have seen in the public figure of Coward), who, as a true modernist to the core, ‘never lik[ed] to think of himself as in any way nineteenth century’. 15 The effeminacy these young bright aesthetes performed was meant to be seen as a rupture from the past, free of guilt and association. 7.2 Attributed to Cecil Beaton. Self-Portrait, 1927. As ‘types’ in the grand tradition of the Enlightenment Project, the athlete and the aesthete as antagonistic cultural figures had long been reported on in the popular press. In 1883, for example, The

in Bachelors of a different sort
Persia, masculinity, and conversion in early seventeenth-century travel writing and drama
Chloë Houston

as a Muslim country, introducing Ithnāˤashari or ‘Twelver’ Shiʿism. 5 There are two reasons why Persia’s identity in early modern Europe makes it particularly relevant for a discussion of gender and conversion in the period. Firstly, Persia, like other Muslim countries at this time, was often associated in European writings with effeminacy, opulence, and decadence. 6 In

in Conversions