Our choice of misogyny (along with misandry and misanthropy) as the organizing topic for this collection, which originally appeared as a special issue of Representations , calls for some explanation. Certainly we did not imagine that the essays collected herein would discover misogyny. The past twenty-five years of feminist research and criticism have already provided ample evidence of the existence—and persistence—of misogyny and attempts to escape from it. Assuming, then, its existence, we were attracted to misogyny as a question that makes visible certain perhaps intractable antagonisms between texts and their readers, as well as between texts and the persons who become the objects of their representations. That is, misogyny seemed to us to emblematize the problem that representation poses when it creates oppositions between what we perceive and what we endorse. And in that sense, misogyny provides the occasion for a discussion of the limits of idealism, or of a conflict between authors and readers comparable to the conflict between misogynists and the women who are misrepresented by its pervasive, but often unrecognized, images.
Some recent feminist writing has imagined that this disjunction could be healed by a science fiction, a utopian vision that would realign our desires with our views about the world; but, while accepting the spirit of that vision, the essays in this volume largely concern themselves with the difficulties of enacting an easy fit between representation and what one might think of as a political will. More precisely, they explore the relation between gender, eroticism, and violence through close analysis of the never simple—in fact, always complicated—modes by which sexual and social difference are mediated by symbolic practice. Within a perspective that embraces so-called high and popular culture, the essays treat a wide variety of genres and forms, ranging from theological tracts and polemical satires, to lyric and epic poetry, to novels, novellas, popular pamphlets, magazines, aesthetic treatises, and advice manuals. On the visual arts, material extends from seventeenth-century painting, to a series of turn-of-the-century monotypes, to the contemporary slasher film. The intent is not, however, to arrive at anything like a general theory based on the accumulation of examples. For, despite the numerous and important points of convergence between essays covering such widely divergent types, each essay is rooted in a specific historical context. Their unity lies less in a common approach or method than in a historically rooted relation between particularity of context and the persistence of certain strikingly
obsessive themes and rhetorical strategies in the staging of sexual difference through disparate cultural modes and moments across almost two millennia.
R. Howard Bloch begins from the premise that in the early centuries of Christianity something fundamental changed in the articulation of sexual difference, which was not to be found in exactly the same form in Platonic, Stoic, Jewish, Gnostic, or late Roman tradition. This enduring break has to do with a linking of the feminine with the aesthetic—the decorative, the ornamental, and the materially contingent—which, as one of the deep-seated mental structures of the West, also evident in the misogyny of Schopenhauer, Proudhon, and Nietzsche, for example, has served historically to define woman as being outside of history and thus to naturalize the notion of the female as secondary, less essential. Bloch carries this association to its logical conclusion by identifying the medieval reproach against woman as verbal abuse—garrulous, contradictory, argumentative; a liar, deceiver, and seducer with words—with the reproach against rhetoric characteristic of the philosophy of language of the Middle Ages. His focus on the relation between the notion of the feminine and literary voice poses questions relevant not only to the Middle Ages but to succeeding centuries, and thereby to this volume as a whole.
Thus Bloch asks: "Is misogyny a matter of the portrayal of women or a more specific discourse? If a question of how women are portrayed, does one such portrayal suffice? Is it still misogyny if men are also so depicted? It is misandry? Is there a masculine equivalent of misogyny? Are we still dealing with misogyny if good women are presented alongside of negative examples? Or, as some maintain, does such balance constitute merely another misogynistic ruse? Is an obsession with women, in other words, misogynistic? Is the designation of misogyny as a topic for academic discourse ultimately a misogynistic gesture?" (p. 7). Bloch's essay also poses several significant questions having to do with intention and interpretation where misogyny is concerned. If misogyny is a topos, a virtual element, found potentially in almost any work, how ascribable is it to something on the order of individual authorial intention? Finally, given the intention of most misogynistic literature to dissuade its audience from associating with women, and given the association between rhetoric and the feminine, how is it possible for any writer to seek to persuade his or her intended audience not to be seduced without himself or herself performing the very acts of verbal deceit and seduction s/he denounces?
In her essay "Making Up Representation: The Risks of Femininity," Jacqueline Lichtenstein shows how the link between the ornamental and the feminine remains in force in the seventeenth century. She situates the aesthetic debate between the colorists and the partisans of line within the classical quarrel over good versus bad rhetoric, which becomes translated, where gender is concerned, into the terms of the pro- and antifeminists of the neoclassical period. Thus decorative aesthetic principle, associated with ornate rhetoric (not necessarily with
all rhetoric, as in Bloch's argument), is equated morally with prostitution, as color assumes the delinquent burdens of illicit pleasure. Cosmetic illusion, aesthetic adultery, is, in the century's own terms, the equivalent of libertinage—profligate feminine sexuality in particular—which, as in the discourse of the early church fathers, is to be condemned because of the instantaneous, ephemeral effects of all bodily sensation.
Joel Fineman, resuming in "Shakespeare's Will : The Temporality of Rape" the assumptions of his recent book on Shakespeare, locates in the Renaissance the transformation of a preexisting poetic tradition based on praise into a poetics of literary subjectivity with a specific characterological profile. According to Fineman, Shakespeare's internally divided, postidealist, resolutely male subject experiences "his own phenomenal substantiality as a materialized heterogeneity" and thus becomes "subject of an unprecedentedly heterosexual, and therefore misogynist, desire for an object that is not admired" (29). By its very nature the Shakespearean subject is complicated, such complication being most powerfully expressed in rhetorical tropes involving hopelessly imbricated contradiction. It is, in fact, the indeterminacy of such endless signifying figures, what Fineman defines as the "rhetorical structure of the cross-coupler" (38) that constitutes in spoken—poetic—language a resistance that is understood to motivate desire in general and rape in particular. In this explanation of the formation of Shakespearean character, which is synonymous with the subject of the early modern period, the erotic and the poetic are indissolubly bound to the formation of literary subjectivity and to the psychologistic self in which is inscribed, following Fineman's argument, an unavoidable provocation to sexual violence.
Frances Ferguson's essay "Rape and the Rise of the Novel" links what in contemporary discussions of rape is sensed as the impossible logic of the crime to the questions of consent and intent as they first were articulated in eighteenth-century rape law. In a remarkable parallel to Fineman's "chiastic cross-coupling," Ferguson demonstrates the extent to which the notion of statutory rape is determined at the outset by the legal attempt to substitute invariable juridical formulae for manipulable terms governing psychological states, as the incoherence of rape law to this day becomes accountable to an inaugural opposition between the formal criteria governing proof and the possibility of determining the will of the victim. "For the statutory definitions establish the possibility—and indeed the inevitability—that consent and intention will be self-contradictory, or impossible, notions. They thus create the categories of consent that is not consent (for some hypothetically consenting female who has not reached the age of consent) and intention that is not intention (for some hypothetically intending and physically competent male who has not reached the age of legal discretion and competence). And these categories, in the very process of functioning as solutions to potential interpretative dilemmas, replicate exactly the kinds of problems that appear in any jury's deliberations concerning a charge of rape" (95–96).
If mental states reduced to self-contradictory constructs eliminate subjectivity from individual situations, the very permanence of contradiction serves to guarantee subjectivity itself; and it is here—at the intersection between eighteenth-century skepticism and prose fiction—that Ferguson situates the rise of the novel, which recapitulates and sustains the contradiction built into the law of rape. With special reference to Clarissa , Ferguson shows that Richardson establishes for the psychological novel "a pattern of psychological complexity that does not at all directly express mental states but rather relies on the contradiction built into the formal stipulation of them. Psychological complexity, that is, pits the stipulated mental state against one's actual mental state, so that one is able to resist without resisting, can have a mental state even in unconsciousness, and is unable to consent even if one wants to" (101). The plight of Clarissa is that of an insuperable volitional infancy which not only characterizes the dangerous sophism of rape law but embodies the difference that the novel inscribes between epistemology and psychology.
Gillian Brown's contribution, "The Empire of Agoraphobia," demonstrates how the passivity to which rape reduces Clarissa becomes normalized in the nineteenth century by the entrenched cultural assimilation of immobility, invalidism, and domesticity to the feminine. Using "Bartleby the Scrivener" as her prime example, but also drawing on such popular sources as Godey's Lady's Book , Brown explores the ways in which Melville's novella of agoraphobia and melodramatic hysteria sustains the opposition between self and the world, private and public space, that seems to work as a strategy of feminine self-containment. Conspiring to keep women at home and out of the marketplace, the "agoraphobic model of self-integrity" thus appears to guarantee the stability of a safe, feminine domestic sphere and to confirm the antifeminist ideal of home protection—housework and reproduction as rest cure. And yet, as Brown demonstrates, the ideal of the wall-hugging homebody, if carried to an extreme, can work to undermine the dynamism of the market; and the enabling effects of agoraphobia become inverted when the self, as in the case of Bartleby, becomes too stable. Bartleby's immobility, his refusal to eat or leave the walls of his Wall Street room, comes to constitute a means of "resistance to nineteenth-century consumerist domestic ideology" (145–46), his anorexia a repudiation of the marketplace altogether.
The model of literature as resistance carries over into Naomi Schor's "The Portrait of a Gentleman: Representing Men in (French) Women's Writing," which begins with questions about the strategies women writers enlist to represent men. Are they different, Schor asks, from those at work in men's writings about women? Do they cut across national boundaries and constitute a specificity of women's fiction? Why does it seem easier for men to represent women in fiction than for women to represent men? Why does misogyny seem to be more prevalent than misandry?
In answering these and other questions Schor focuses on analysis of three French novels by women and, in particular, on the recurrent novelistic scene—a virtual female topos found in Mme. de Lafayette's Princesse de Clèves , Mme. de Staël's Corinne , and George Sand's Indiana —in which a male protagonist observes a woman looking at a portrait that turns out to be either his own or that of another masculine figure. Here again, as in Gillian Brown's essay, the outcome is not always easily predictable. For instead of supporting as anticipated the "male subject's fascination with the evidence of phallic power," these scenes, as Schor demonstrates, work on the contrary to provoke in the observer consciousness of a process of supplementarity akin to that of fetishism. Rather than reinforce male egotism, they undermine the man's secure relationship to his own image. By revealing the link between male narcissism and fetishism these scenes subvert "the very foundations of the representational system elaborated by patriarchal society" (126). Having thus deconstructed male representation, Schor proposes as an alternative a "female iconoclasm," which "seals the end of the reign of the specular" because it no longer participates in the specularity of idealization. To the question of why there are "no images of men in women's writing" Schor responds, "because that writing is marked from the outset by a profound suspicion of the image and its grounding phallicism" (130).
Charles Bernheimer takes up the questions of fetishism and images by evoking the Mallarmean paradox, reported by Paul Valéry, that "a danseuse is not a woman who dances, because she is not a woman, and she does not dance" (158). "Degas's Brothels: Voyeurism and Ideology," in many ways the most psychoanalytic and most Marxian of these essays, comes to grips with the relation between male castration anxiety and misogyny as a principle of economic domination. Using Degas's little-known monotype brothel drawings, Bernheimer zeroes in on the creation of the feminine as an "aesthetic fiction" of the male voyeuristic gaze—which explains the presence, within the margins of these smeary, smutty drawings, of well-dressed potential clients whose eyes are fixed on the nude bodies immobilized and contained by the walls of the brothel, just as Gillian Brown's agoraphobic housewives are constrained by home. The ideological message seems on the surface to be one in which the prostitute is transformed—metamorphosed even by the very amorphous portrayal of the female body—into a pure object of consumption. And yet Bernheimer, again like Brown, sounds the paradox of commodification made so obvious that, by becoming conscious, it ceases to function. Degas, according to Bernheimer, replaces the substitutability of the prostitute with that of the client, thus reversing the anticipated relation of power. As in the example of Schor's viewings of the portrait being viewed, the monotypes reflect back the "discomforting impersonality of [the viewer's] ideological position," thereby subverting a capitalist misogynistic ideology (174). The specific effects of the monotypes are more difficult to interpret than they seemed at first
glance. Like Schor's women writers who refuse the image, Degas comes to be seen finally as antimisogynistic because of the antirepresentational, modernistic breakdown of form that the monotypes imply.
Carol Clover pushes the commodification of the female to its limit in her analysis of the slasher film, which, she maintains, holds the key to contemporary sexual attitudes. In "Her Body, Himself: Gender in the Slasher Film," Clover posits a relation of horror to pornography as that of gender to sex, developing both an external taxonomy and an internal structural paradigm for such contemporary classics as Psycho, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (I and II), Halloween (I and II), Hell Night, Dressed to Kill, The Eyes of Laura Mars, Friday the Thirteenth, Nightmare on Elm Street , and Slumber Party Massacre , not to mention the parodic Buckets of Blood and Motel Hell . The basic components of the horror film include the killers, males locked in childhood and filled with infantile rage; the Terrible Place, which is most often a house or a tunnel; weapons, which are generally pretechnological, as opposed even to guns; victims, whose lingering images are invariably female even where men are also killed; the Final Girl, or the woman who, having undergone the ordeal of witnessing death and mutilation, herself survives as the image of abject terror; shock, or the cultivation of intentionally outrageous violent special effects.
Given the slasher film's self-conscious formulae, which border on camp, what explains their attraction? What is the audience's stake in this "particular nightmare" of assault and counterassault? How can we rationalize, much less justify, the pleasure of viewing the violence of chase, mutilation, and death?
The answer to these and other questions does not lie in any simple equation of sex and violence. For, as Clover notes, rape is practically nonexistent in slasher films, sex and violence being not concomitant but alternative principles. Instead, Clover proposes that behind the fluidity of perspective of the slasher film, which in the beginning encourages identification with the killer and later shifts sympathies toward the Final Girl, lies a deeper delight in cross-gendering. The slasher is a gender bender; the killer being more often than not a male in "gender distress," the victim a female whose femininity is compromised by masculine interests and, in particular, by an "'active investigating gaze' normally reserved for males and hideously punished in females when they assume it themselves" (210). In the end the Final Girl is always rendered masculine, phallicized, as the final terrible struggle, despite the gendering of terror itself as female, remains wholly masculine: "It may be through the female body that the body of the audience is sensationalized, but the sensation is an entirely male affair" (213). The guilty pleasure of the slasher film has to do ultimately with the gender-identity game, the "play of pronoun function," the crossing of bounds that allow either sex to play—within the space of the movie theater—at being the other.
Although we set no agenda in soliciting the essays in this volume, the recurrence of the issue of visibility suggests the importance of the subject of seeing and
being seen in today's discussions of gender. Indeed, the constellation of issues that have been located by Irigaray, Mulvey, and others around the male gaze emerge as pivotal for all the contributors. It is a notion particularly powerful for applying the aesthetic terms of spectatorship to questions more commonly seen in political terms. Thus, for Irigaray, the demand for meaning implicit in the male gaze entails a coercive desire to fix women, and the indeterminacy of woman's meaning constitutes a challenge to "representation's scoptophiliac objective." Although the aesthetic tradition that has descended to us from Kant emphasizes the primacy of an aesthetic experience in which the reader or viewer can claim validity for his or her perception despite its open contradiction of statements of authorial intention or historical possibility, such a stance obviously conflicts with any political discussion that emphasizes self-determination.
The strength of Irigaray's position is that it pits a desire for knowledge against indeterminacy in such a way as to reverse the lines of force: to be defined is to be powerless; to show the limits of definition can provide access to power. The strength of one competing version of American feminism—that of Catherine MacKinnon and Andrea Dworkin—is to reverse (almost precisely) Irigaray's line of argument: to be misdefined is to be powerless; to know the power of definition is to gain power. Thus, whereas Irigaray's feminism emphasizes feminine subjectivity, MacKinnon's and Dworkin's emphasizes the formal representation of subjectivity: the one expands the space between the perceivers (at the risk of sacrificing the notion of perceptibility); the other contracts it (to ensure legibility at the risk of sacrificing the notion of individual mental states).
These crucial feminist positions indicate some of the difficulties that representation poses for subjects that can, justifiably, ask for justice. For if the aesthetic solution to interpretative problems is to accord the reception its own authority (in a version of così è, se vi pare ), a subject like misogyny can only arise from a palpable sense of the discrepancy between perspectives. Thus the status of the specular repeatedly is at issue in these essays. For R. Howard Bloch, in the opening essay, literature and misogyny alike arise from a specular relationship to rhetoric as well as to women, whereby both are viewed not as a condition of perceptibility but as an appendage—the merely decorative, the accidental, the contingent. The gaze, as the mechanism of seduction, establishes a pattern of conflict between perception and intellection. "For," as Bloch writes, "if a look engenders desire, desire, in turn, forecloses all future possibility of seeing" (15); sight becomes the instrument of the senses, of self-contamination by means of an external object of desire. And, in a crucial paradox—one of the many incoherences that characterize the discourse of misogyny—"there can be no such thing as a male gaze or desire" (15) because perception itself is in the Middle Ages so identified with woman that anyone perceiving a woman's beauty becomes feminized by the very act of gazing.
Like Bloch, Jacqueline Lichtenstein emphasizes the reactions of the gazer in tracing the link between misogyny and the decorative in seventeenth-century
France. Noting that the majority of writers of the Grand Siècle "indefatigably celebrated the acuteness and discrimination of 'feminine reason'" (77), Lichtenstein focuses on the seventeenth-century revival of a tradition that associates "a critique of women with a condemnation of makeup" and "the problematic of ornament" (77) with that of femininity. Indeed, she demonstrates that the force of this pejorative association was so strong as to underwrite an intense debate within painting itself, an art that by definition constitutes an appeal to the eyes. The conflict between the so-called colorists and anticolorists pits color against drawing, with the anticolorists claiming that color, frequently personified as a courtesan, was "as evanescent in its material nature as in its effects" (81). And whereas Bloch identifies the medieval aesthetic as one that repudiates the very desiring gaze that is conceived to be overcome by its object, Lichtenstein charts a triumphal progress for color and, by implication, for women in the aesthetics of French neoclassicism. In contrasting the Latin opposition between healthy and virile rhetoric and the eunuchlike eloquence of an emasculated language (79) with seventeenth-century France's emblematic contrasts between feminine figures, she provides a concluding and conclusive image for her argument that Asiaticism, in the form of a defense of the pleasure of submitting to the speechlessness induced by makeup and color, becomes a genuine alternative to the sterner pleasures of Atticism in neoclassical aesthetics.
Charles Bernheimer takes a somewhat different tack in emphasizing not only the impact of the male gaze on the gazer but also on the woman being viewed. He identifies a tradition in Degas criticism that proceeds from Huysmans and his celebration of what he took to be the artist's identification of his own point of view with "an attentive cruelty, a patient hatred" (161). It is, Bernheimer argues, a critical perspective that casts the artist as sadistic male gazer and his subjects as masochistic collaborators that makes misogyny both genderless and boundless, as "woman in Huysmans's interpretation of Degas's images is not simply the object of male disdain; she has internalized that disdain to the point that she is the degraded object of her own virulent execration" (162–63). And by that internalization, she seems to provide "evidence of woman's enlightened awareness of her irredeemably debased sexuality" (163). The brothel monotypes that Bernheimer focuses on might similarly appear to "address the male viewer's social privilege, to construe him as a voyeur, and to cater to his misogyny" (175); but they might also, he suggests, de-privilege that perspective in which the viewer "recognizes himself as desiring psychological subject in the mirror of his capitalist activity" (178). Instead of leaving these two alternatives in infinite oscillation, however, Bernheimer proceeds to suggest that the very reification of the prostitute's body aligns her with the mutilated representational forms—"the thumb prints, smudges, blots, and other traces" of Degas's "gestural life"—that emblematize Degas's attack on the norms of representational practice.
Bernheimer's Degas thus presents the possibility of "granting Degas's brothel
inmates strength by insisting on the aesthetic value of their objectification" (180). And in that sense he perhaps instantiates a parallel to the kind of aesthetic development that Naomi Schor recognizes in her account of "female iconoclasm," a "peculiarly feminine form of antirepresentationalism" (128). Schor explores one particularly resonant, gendered asymmetry: while the pictorial and novelistic traditions have assumed male authority to "take" women's portraits with some insight, the tradition of commentary has suggested that women novelists have difficulty reversing this process and depicting male character. By analyzing a recurrent scene, one that "stages the violation by the male gaze of the female protagonist's private space and the male protagonist's discovery therein of a portrait, his own and/or that of another masculine figure" (114), Schor of course raises the possibility of misandry as "a sort of women writers' revenge" (115) or a turning of the tables. And, in consonance with a modernist claim that "representation stands for the interests of power," Schor's analysis suggests an eluding of visibility that thereby precludes as well the inevitably patriarchal transfer of power between succeeding generations of men as part of the process of socializing fetishism, a process initiated, according to the Freudian fable, at the moment in every little boy's life when he sees the genitals of the opposite sex. Schor thus imagines a "female iconoclasm" whose disruptive function is equivalent to that which Bernheimer posits for the smudged and truncated images constituting Degas's assault not on the prostitutes whom he represents but on the traditions of representation itself. Indeed, in Schor's account, the lack of images of men in French women's writing is no lack at all, but rather a gendered inauguration of the problematized images associated with modernism. French women's writing thus contains a critique of male representation that is much less an attack on men than an aesthetic rendering of representation as being "from its very inception in crisis" (130).
If Schor and Bernheimer would locate a representational crisis in the consciousness of a visual fetishism that can only translate its narcissism into the illusion of possession, Joel Fineman locates a representational crisis in Shakespeare's The Rape of Lucrece in the poem's continual suggestion that "the very act of speaking, true or false, . . . spells an end to the ideality of vision" (59). In Fineman's account, a visionary aesthetics of transparent imitation, "of presentational representation" (57), enlists the "skillful painting" to "function as powerful eyewitness of Lucrece's plight" (56). And this visionary pictorial aesthetic, though it implies "an equally perennial and equally visionary semiotics, one whereby a signifier, conceived as something visually iconic, is so fixedly and unequivocally related to its signified that by itself it can present its meaning or its referent to the 'eye of mind'" (57), collides, according to Fineman, with a language in which characters discover "misogynist erotics" in the form of an "internal sense of present broken self and retrospective temporality" and "turn into textured subjects when they learn firsthand how 'by our ears our hearts oft tainted be'" (66).
Language, with its appeal to the ear, revolves around the contradiction that painting (in its ideal form, of course) would skirt; in its ostentatious cross-coupling of truth with falsehood and desire with its frustration, Shakespeare's poem presents a structure that identifies misogyny less as an attack on women than as a condition of subjectivity under the representation of language.
Frances Ferguson, in her account of Clarissa and the psychological novel, likewise explores the contradictions inherent in representation, including the legal tradition that would identify and punish crime, specifically the crime of rape. Although rape law itself represents an attempt to make the crime visible, the visibility and legibility of the law depends on its establishing categories and stipulating their meanings. Yet this gesture of stipulation, of resorting to categories, recreates its own version of a conflict between individual intention and consent and the representation of those mental states in categorical terms. The achievement of Clarissa and of the psychological novel in general is to identify subjectivity neither as the visibility of individual mental states nor as their dissolution in larger and more visible categorical terms but rather as the perceptible conflict between the two. Even Clarissa's physical appearance is marked by this conflict, as Ferguson reads her self-wasting as her enactment of the stipulated state of nonconsent.
In her reading of "Bartleby the Scrivener" and women's domestic handbooks of nineteenth-century America, Gillian Brown argues that Bartleby, in embodying agoraphobia, hysteria, and other "female" nervous disorders, accepts invalidism in protest against the demand that he—like the women who manifested similar symptoms—become visible in the world of the marketplace. Agoraphobia, according to Brown, is not so much fear of open spaces as fear of being seen when that process seems to imply an inevitable misunderstanding, on the model of an exchange that is always taken to be unequal. The agoraphobic, the wall-hugging homebody, seeks to become self-contained, most importantly by being visible only to herself/himself and by needing so little as to be sustained only by herself/himself. However, in attempting to be visible only to himself, the agoraphobic Bartleby becomes invisible even to himself, since the outcome of his protest against the marketplace is his own death—a death that can never be a complete enough retraction of his existence, his availability to the world of other people.
Finally, in contrast to Brown's account of feminized repudiation of the very notion of being the object of others' sight, Carol Clover argues that the slasher film may begin in a sadistic male gaze but becomes feminist in spite of itself. Addressing the subject of the audience and its relation to the physical violation, Clover complicates the model of the oppressive male gaze operating on the passive female victim. She questions the traditional equation of camera point of view with identification (in part because preserving that equation sometimes establishes impossible identities, as with the "birds-eye perspective" of Hitchcock's
camera in The Birds ), arguing that the slasher film provides the model for a realigned specularity: the cross-dressed perspective of many of the slasher's protagonists finds a counterpart in the person of the Final Girl, the masculinized female survivor who dares to gaze back at her masculine attackers.
From Bloch's account of how the medieval rhetorical tradition finds gender where there is none to Clover's discussion of how modern popular images appropriate sex in terms of permeable gender categories, these essays explore not only the ways in which gender is represented but also the changes to which representations subject questions of sexual difference.