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This book revives a practice which Robinson describes as 'supposedly retrograde' p. As he explains in his Preface, from the vantage-point of 'differentist' scholarship, itself founded on the Foucauldian premise that homosexuality was an 'invention' of the nineteenth century, such a focus may seem 'naively anachronistic' p.
But Robinson argues bravely for the validity of 'continuist' approaches p. His central contention is that 'if we remain open to similarity … instead of only identity and difference, we can more productively explore the longstanding Western awareness that people often selectively conceal and disclose same-sex love and desire' p.
In his strong third chapter, 'The Closeting of Closeting: Cleland, Smollett, Sodomy, and the Critics' Robinson juxtaposes an astonishingly animated and, he argues, realistic, depiction of sodomy between 'two young sparks' in John Cleland's Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure with examples of 'Gay Bashing Eighteenth-Century David robinson gay p. The last two texts form a prelude to Robinson's analysis of 'Smollett's textual homophobia' in Roderick Ransom p. The writing here displays Robinson's lively engagement with other criticism attentive to homosexuality as it impacts on these writers' texts and identities, whereas, when arguing for the satirical anti-lesbian thrust of Delarivier Manley's New Atlantis in Chapter David robinson gay, his differences from the pro-lesbian readings of feminist critics produces less supple prose and some unwieldy footnotes.
In [End ] criticism too, similarity more often produces interesting textual possibilities than absolute difference. Curiously, Shakespeare and Fletcher's The Two Noble Kinsmenwith Emilia's narrative of her twin-like love for her girlhood friend Flavina, rates not even a passing mention. The discussion gains coherence from the Ovidian myth the plays hold in common, and Robinson's tracking of the plays' varying processes of 'rejecting or unknowing' p.
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Institutional. LOG IN. Volume 25, 2, pp. In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content: Reviewed by:. Robinson, David M. Sophie Tomlinson. If you would like to authenticate using a different subscribed institution or have your own and password to Project MUSE.
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Book Review:: Closeted Writing and Lesbian and Gay Literature: Classical, Early Modern, Eighteenth-Century. By David M. Robinson. Aldershot, England and Burlington, VT: Ashgate, Pp. £