Reasons for re-examination The story cycle of the Kind and Unkind Girls (ATU 480), in which the modest and obedient girl is rewarded and her selfish negative gets her comeuppance, was among the last to be subjected to a rigorous geographical-historical treatment. As its researcher Warren Roberts subtly remarked: ‘Type 480 gives little comfort to those who maintain that

in Tales of magic, tales in print
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National identity in The Wild Irish Girl and Sybil

This chapter offers a comparison of two novels that share a surprising number of features, and which both have strong links with aesthetic theory. The first is The Wild Irish Girl: A National Tale, by Lady Morgan (1776–1859), which was first published in 1806 and is the most self-consciously picturesque novel ever written. The second is Sybil, or the Two Nations by

in Cultural identities and the aesthetics of Britishness
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Writing sex and nation

her darkness doth Erin lie sleeping, Still doth the pure light its dawning delay. When will that day-star, mildly springing, Warm our isle with peace and love? 16 Five Irish Women When will heaven, its sweet bell ringing, Call my spirit to the fields above?1 In Irish realism, we find that the prevailing representations of women are quite different. Women and girls suffer greatly at the hands of men within their own families and society. They are often exploited and unloved. This can be taken as an indictment of the emotional and sexual repression apparently so

in Five Irish women

6 Before and after the political While he was editing Entre les murs, Cantet was given Joyce Carol Oates’s classic American novel, Foxfire: Confessions of a Girl Gang to read. First published in 1993, the novel presented itself as a mature woman’s account of her 1950s youth and involvement with a gang of girls spurred into revolt against an oppressive, male-dominated society. Cantet was gripped by the book and unsurprisingly drawn to an adaptation. The novel contains so many of his favourite themes: the collision between the utopian and the real; shame and

in Laurent Cantet
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Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Sarah Grand and the sexual education of girls

9 ‘If I Were a Man’: Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Sarah Grand and the sexual education of girls Janet Beer and Ann Heilmann ‘I wish and I wish I were a man’, Christina Rossetti wrote wistfully in 1854, adding that the most felicitous condition for women was perhaps that which allowed the cessation of existence altogether: ‘Or, better than any being, were not:/Were nothing at all in all the world’. To Rossetti, writing at a time of public and private disenfranchisement, woman appeared but a ‘doubly blank’ slate, at best to be inscribed with the desire for masculine

in Special relationships

add that ‘alas, they do appear in disproportionate numbers among the criminal classes’.1 Or foundlings might, as did some of the women who settled down in conservatories for endangered girls (see Chapter 6), simply become part of the institution itself, unable or reluctant to emerge from it, living in a world set apart from the mainstream of society and helping to keep it in being. ‘Scholars or artificers’ Not surprisingly, more careers were open to boys returning to the hospital than to girls. Governors or officials could apprentice boys to local artisans with a

in Tolerance, Regulation and Rescue
Sexuality, trauma and history in Edna O’Brien and John McGahern

argument. O’Brien’s The Country Girls trilogy (1960–64) and McGahern’s The Dark (1965) were controversially banned, reinforcing just the conception of the writer’s relationship to Irish society which Martin was keen to consign to the past. Yet formally, these are novels of a society in flux. As Bildungsromane the novels foregrounded youth at a historical moment when Irish social life was being vibrantly altered by what was now called ‘youth culture’. Perhaps the most salient demonstration of this was in music – the great crowds that thronged the Irish concerts of The

in Impure thoughts

2 Sisters as one soul in two bodies A ma sœur! (Fat Girl) The third film in what could be called Breillat’s ‘virgin trilogy’ has two heroines, Anaïs, who is twelve, and her fifteen-year-old sister, Elena. It is as though the singular protagonists of the earlier coming-of-age films, Alice in Une vraie jeune fille or Lili in 36 fillette, had been split or doubled. Indeed, Breillat has said that Fat Girl or A ma sœur! could have been titled ‘Deux vraies jeunes filles’ (Bonnaud 2001: 14). Like Alice or Lili, Anaïs and Elena are both virginal girls on holiday with

in Catherine Breillat
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be surprised to learn that they were all written by university lecturers in English, but I won’t name the three authors, so that you can, if you wish, explore your own assumptions about the gender of the authors as you read the chapter. However, if you would rather know the gender of the author before reading each poem, the titles of all three can be found in the ‘List of poems discussed’ at the end of the book. Here is the first: The Peepshow Girl Amongst the long grass Of down-town Berlin Manet settles Behind shutter five And begins to sketch. Barry.indb 146 9

in Reading poetry

1 Female virgins and the shaming gaze Une vraie jeune fille (A Real Young Girl) Given Breillat’s efforts over the years to distance her work from mere pornography, there is some irony in the fact that her first directing opportunity was partly owing to the popularity of pornographic films. After the abolition of censorship in 1974 and the box-office success of Emmanuelle, the tide of pornographic films rose in France, amounting to almost half of all French film production in 1974 and 1975. In line with this trend, producer André Génovès offered Breillat the

in Catherine Breillat