Creative women and daydreaming in Margo Lanagan’s Tender Morsels (2008)
Emma V. Miller

Since its release in 2008 as a Young Adult (YA) text, Tender Morsels has been subject to widespread praise and censure. In reviews and reading groups it has been criticised by adults (including educators), as well its target audience of fourteen plus readers, for containing circumstances too challenging and traumatic for young readers; and with incestuous sexual abuse and gang rape in the first few pages it is easy to see why that has been the case. By juxtaposing the dominant psychoanalytic theories of literary criticism, with the fairytale retellings by feminist authors from the 1970s to the present time, as well as key second wave feminist texts like Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex (1949) and Susan Brownmiller’s Against Our Will (1975), this novel can be seen to not only challenge the prevalence of a ‘real’ feminism in our literary criticism, but also in the Western world at large.

in Incest in contemporary literature
Abstract only
Miles Leeson and Emma V. Miller
in Incest in contemporary literature
Narrating incest through ‘différance’ in the work of Angela Carter, A.S. Byatt and Doris Lessing
Emma V. Miller and Miles Leeson

Using Carter’s textual relationship with Saussure and Derrida as a starting point, this chapter will examine the writing of two other “literary” female authors and their narratological engagement with incest and difference with regard to Derridean différance. This will include a discussion of A.S. Byatt’s writing of incest and the assertion of familial class difference in Morpho Eugenia (1992). Similarly in Doris Lessing’s The Golden Notebook (1962), there is also a social and cultural hierarchy of difference, which is expressed through the telling of incest. By linking the difference of both the incestuous and the separateness of the notebooks a reading of transcription will suggest that incest does not only fill the abject space but comes perilously closer to home.

in Incest in contemporary literature