Rethinking female pleasure: purity and desire in early twentieth century Australia

Featherstone, Lisa (2012) Rethinking female pleasure: purity and desire in early twentieth century Australia. Women's History Review, 21 5: 715-731. doi:10.1080/09612025.2012.658181


Author Featherstone, Lisa
Title Rethinking female pleasure: purity and desire in early twentieth century Australia
Journal name Women's History Review   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0961-2025
1747-583X
Publication date 2012
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/09612025.2012.658181
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Volume 21
Issue 5
Start page 715
End page 731
Total pages 17
Place of publication Abingdon, Oxon United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Abstract This article explores the multiple and complex ways white heterosexual women constructed female sexual pleasure and desire in early twentieth-century Australia. It considers the idealisation of female sexuality, and the ways this was both subverted and re-iterated by women themselves, through a study of female writers. It suggests that the challenge to female sexual normativity—as marital and reproductive—was slow and staggered, with many women unable to firmly challenge the sexual ideal. But a close reading of the work of a number of female authors, especially the poet Zora Cross, allows glimpses of how some women did explore, construct and rethink sexual pleasure within their writings, negotiating between the sometimes contradictory impulses of purity and desire.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry
 
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Created: Fri, 22 Jul 2016, 15:44:50 EST by Lucy O'Brien on behalf of School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry