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Cover for Reparative/Redempti​ve Reading from Reading Gaol: Towards a Eucharistic Theory of Interpretation
dc.contributor.advisorO'Malley, Patrick R.
dc.creator
dc.date.accessioned2020-06-30T13:31:48Z
dc.date.available2020-06-30T13:31:48Z
dc.date.created2020
dc.date.issued
dc.date.submitted01/01/2020
dc.identifier.uri
dc.descriptionM.A.
dc.description.abstractThis thesis argues that Oscar Wilde anticipates Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick’s concept
dc.description.abstractof reparative reading. In 2003’s Touching Feeling: Affect, Pedagogy, Performativity,
dc.description.abstractSedgwick argues that the hermeneutics of suspicion – whereby the reader exposes the
dc.description.abstractunjust power structures lying beneath the surface of a cultural object – has become
dc.description.abstractendemic to literary studies in a way that limits scholars’ political and interpretive impact.
dc.description.abstractShe offers reparative reading as an alternative approach that prioritizes the curatorial
dc.description.abstractaffects of hope and nurture, enabling scholars to find sustenance in cultural objects made
dc.description.abstractwith hostile intent.
dc.description.abstractThough a very different text from Touching Feeling, Wilde’s De Profundis also
dc.description.abstractarticulates an approach to cultural objects that can productively be understood as
dc.description.abstractreparative. Incarcerated for “gross indecency” with other men, Wilde refuses to accept
dc.description.abstractthe punitive and disciplinary intent of the prison system, instead re-envisioning its harsh
dc.description.abstractmechanisms as means for spiritual growth and aesthetic development. In my introduction,
dc.description.abstractI compare the two texts, arguing that both ultimately advocate a model of reading that I
dc.description.abstractcall Eucharistic. I then outline this Eucharistic model, drawing on Roman Catholic
dc.description.abstractsacramental theology to crystallize the affective motives and political investments of
dc.description.abstractWilde and Sedgwick’s projects. Finally, I situate this Eucharistic model in the current
dc.description.abstractscholarly conversation on queer theory.
dc.description.abstractIn each of the chapters, I analyze how Wilde reparatively engages various aspects
dc.description.abstractof the Christian tradition to nurture his identity as a queer man. The first chapter
dc.description.abstractconsiders “The Fisherman and His Soul,” a fairy-tale published in 1891’s A House of
dc.description.abstractPomegranates, and argues that Wilde undermines the false binary between sensuality and
dc.description.abstractspirituality by figuring a self-righteous priest and the titular lovestruck fisherman as
dc.description.abstractdoubles of one another. The second chapter argues that Wilde embeds baptismal and
dc.description.abstractEucharistic imagery in The Importance of Being Earnest, repackaging the eroticized
dc.description.abstractCatholicism of earlier works to appeal to a mainstream, middle-class Anglican audience.
dc.description.abstractMy final chapter returns to De Profundis, arguing that we should see the letter as a
dc.description.abstractreparative reworking of the biblical epistles of St. Paul.
dc.formatPDF
dc.format.extent106 leaves
dc.languageen
dc.publisherGeorgetown University
dc.sourceGeorgetown University-Graduate School of Arts & Sciences
dc.sourceEnglish
dc.subjectCatholicism
dc.subjectGender and Sexuality Studies
dc.subjectOscar Wilde
dc.subjectQueer theory
dc.subjectReligion
dc.subjectVictorian
dc.subject.lcshBritish literature
dc.subject.lcshIrish literature
dc.subject.lcshEnglish literature
dc.subject.otherEnglish literature
dc.titleReparative/Redempti​ve Reading from Reading Gaol: Towards a Eucharistic Theory of Interpretation
dc.typethesis


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