Queering gender in contemporary female Bildung narrative

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Abstract

The paper explores, in the context of feminist discussions about the Bildungsroman, a contemporary British novel that offers shocking images of female coming of age at the turn of the millennium. Queering gender and introducing male elements into the heroine’s process of maturation, the analysed novel appears to raise questions about the continuous relevance of the feminist distinction between male and female version of the genre. The paper however argues that although significantly rewriting both female Bildung and pornographic narratives, Helen Walsh’s Brass can still be read as a variation of the female Bildungsroman and an example of its contemporary developments.

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