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Hostility and Solidarity: Female Homosociality in the Fiction of Toni Morrison

ZANGANEH, MOTAHHAREH (2015) Hostility and Solidarity: Female Homosociality in the Fiction of Toni Morrison. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



The critically acclaimed African American novelist Toni Morrison depicts female communities and bonds in almost all of her works. This thesis will explore how this marks a deep interest in female homosociality, its dynamics within familial and non-familial relationships, its politics in the face of patriarchy, and its shaping by different contexts. The seven novels studied in this thesis, selected for their diverse engagement with homosociality and as representative of different stages of Morrison’s writing career, are: Sula (1973), Song of Solomon (1977), Beloved (1987), Jazz (1992), Paradise (1997), Love (2003), and A Mercy (2008). Examining Morrison’s portrayal of women’s interactions through a broad feminist lens, and looking at the part such portrayals play in her wider narrative schemes, this thesis will map a rich and complicated set of interrelations and connections that extends our understanding of her work. Morrison neither idealizes nor dismisses female homosociality; she reveals problematic ties and patterns but also suggests female togetherness can be a means for women to gain an independent identity, achieve self-recognition and solidarity, and sometimes even enjoy better and more equal relationships with men.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Arts and Humanities > English Studies, Department of
Thesis Date:2015
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:01 Apr 2015 14:53

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