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Sex Expression and American Women Writers 1860–1940$
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Dale M. Bauer

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780807832301

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: July 2014

DOI: 10.5149/9780807887691_bauer

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 29 July 2021

Conclusion Sexual Exhaustion

Conclusion Sexual Exhaustion

(p.217) Conclusion Sexual Exhaustion
Sex Expression and American Women Writers 1860–1940

Dale M. Bauer

University of North Carolina Press

This book concludes by explaining that the fictions discussed herein disclose how women writers understood the sexualization of culture, even as they separated it from the increasing commodification of sexuality. The author has also traced three kinds of hope for sexuality, focused on transcendent, transformative, and therapeutic desires. By coining words and developing symbols such as “worse,” “still,” and “freezing,” these writers attempted to master the new code of sex relations, thereby wresting meaning from the new sexual vernacular circulating in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The categories the author has chosen to study—ugliness, middle age, sex power, inarticulate sexuality, and therapeutic intimacy—are the ones considered most crucial in the transformation of women's writing about sexuality from late Victorian to modern times.

Keywords:   women writers, sexualization of culture, commodification of sexuality, therapeutic desires, sex relations

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