In the company of men : cross-dressed women around 1800 / Elisabeth Krimmer.

Krimmer, Elisabeth, 1967- [Browse]
Detroit, Mich. : Wayne State University Press, c2004.
xii, 294 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.


Summary note
"In the wake of the revolutionary wars, the figure of the cross-dressed woman proliferated in novels, plays, popular tales, and real-life accounts that circulated throughout Germany. Sometimes appearing in soldier's garb and engaging in battle like Joan of Arc, other times donning overalls and plying a trade, and female cross-dresser tested the revolutionary ideas of freedom and equality. Perhaps her most provocative challenge, however, was to contemporary notions of what it meant to be a women or a man." "Elisabeth Krimmer explores this challenge by tracing the motif of cross-dressing in novels and plays by eighteenth-century German writers. Revolutionary ideology wasn't the sole motivation for the presence of cross-dressed female characters in literary works. Many writers were responding to a paradigm shift in the definition of gender, whereby female and male bodies were no longer considered different configurations of identical physical structures but as wholly different from one another. Analyzing the figure of the cross-dresser allows insights into the discursive strategies and vagaries that surrounded the introduction of the new gender model, in which women's bodies became the primary anchors of their underprivileged position." "Krimmer shows that female writers expressed their resistance to the new body-gender axis through their portrayal of cross-dressed characters. By creating heroines whose gender identity is defined through performance, not biology, women writers refuted a theory that conceives of anatomy as destiny. Revealing the similarities between this concept and postmodern ideas of gender performance, Krimmer brings our eighteenth-century heritage to bear on current issues of body politics."--BOOK JACKET.
Bibliographic references
Includes bibliographical references (p. 215-285) and index.
Ch. 1. Equality, liberty, travesty : the female soldier and the French revolution -- Ch. 2. Trans-gender/trans-nation : Trojan horses in women's literature -- Ch. 3. The death of a cross-dresser : epistemologies of the body -- Ch. 4. Classic amazons : performing gender in Goethe's Weimar -- Ch. 5. Female fantasies : poetology and androgyny.
0814331459 (alk. paper)
C - S

Supplementary Information