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Reading the Body Politic

Feminist Criticism and Latin American Women Writers

1992
Author:

Amy K. Kaminsky

Reading the Body Politic

Proposes a Latin American feminist criticism that is both regionally specific and in current dialogue with North American and European feminist practices.

Proposes a Latin American feminist criticism that is both regionally specific and in current dialogue with North American and European feminist practices.

“Arguing on the one hand that Anglo-American and Continental feminism cannot be applied directly to Latin American women writers without a consideration of the latter’s cultural and political context, and on the other hand, that feminist theory has more to reveal about these writers than many of them would acknowledge, Kaminsky offers insightful, often stunning readings of works by Alicia Partnoy, Elena Garro, Cristina Peri Rossi, Sylvia Molloy, and Gaby Brimmer (who worked in collaboration with Elena Poniatowska on her autobiography). The motif of the exile (because of politics, sexual orientation, physical handicap) is explore, with analogies made between the body as physical presence, on the one hand, and sexual and textual writing on the other. In all instances, Kaminsky insists that feminist critical discourse must deal with the concrete and the wordly, that like feminist practice, it must concern itself with responsibility and the possibility for real (not just theoretical) transformation. These are some of the most intelligent and compelling essays written by a North American academic about the writing of Latin American women whose reality is anything but academic.” Choice

Proposes a Latin American feminist criticism that is both regionally specific and in current dialogue with North American and European feminist practices.


Reading the Body Politic

Amy K. Kaminsky is professor of women's studies and a member of the graduate faculty in Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Minnesota. She is the author of After Exile (1999) and editor of Water Lilies (1995).

Reading the Body Politic

“Arguing on the one hand that Anglo-American and Continental feminism cannot be applied directly to Latin American women writers without a consideration of the latter’s cultural and political context, and on the other hand, that feminist theory has more to reveal about these writers than many of them would acknowledge, Kaminsky offers insightful, often stunning readings of works by Alicia Partnoy, Elena Garro, Cristina Peri Rossi, Sylvia Molloy, and Gaby Brimmer (who worked in collaboration with Elena Poniatowska on her autobiography). The motif of the exile (because of politics, sexual orientation, physical handicap) is explore, with analogies made between the body as physical presence, on the one hand, and sexual and textual writing on the other. In all instances, Kaminsky insists that feminist critical discourse must deal with the concrete and the wordly, that like feminist practice, it must concern itself with responsibility and the possibility for real (not just theoretical) transformation. These are some of the most intelligent and compelling essays written by a North American academic about the writing of Latin American women whose reality is anything but academic.” Choice

“Throughout her book Kaminsky situates herself at the ‘intersection of politics, gender and sexuality’ that embody Latin American feminist criticism. Her work is interesting, informative, and challenging. Through her writing Kaminsky reassembles the dismembered body on the cover of her book to reassert the concept of the body as a useful tool and blueprint for future Latin Americanist feminist critics.” South Central Review