Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:

Title: Plural Not Singular: Homosexuality in Taiwanese Literature in the 1960s
Authors: 紀大偉
Contributors: 台文所
Date: 2016-12
Issue Date: 2018-06-21 17:36:18 (UTC+8)
Abstract: What is homosexuality? Before moving on to the texts, I must deal with one question often brought up by the reader: What is “homosexuality”? In response to this seemingly naive question, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick declares that it is difficult to define what homosexuality is. In her groundbreaking Epistemology of the Closet (1990), she outlines definitions of homosexuality in her widely quoted chart, “Models of Gay/Straight Definition in Terms of Overlapping Sexuality and Gender” (p. 88). I transcribe her chart into the following four models of persons, which will facilitate my discussion of the plurality of experiences between members of the same sex in literature. The first model, guided by what Sedgwick calls a “minoritizing” attitude, includes persons defined by what they are, whereas the second model, conceptualized with a “universalizing” attitude, includes those defined by what they do regardless of their sexual identity. The coexistence of the two models suggests that “homosexuality” is not merely composed of a single unified type of purely homosexual persons. I prefer this universalizing attitude in my treatment of the less discussed texts with auxiliary homosexual characters, dispensable homosexual sexual acts, and secretive knowledge of homosexuality. I appreciate the undervalued texts that do not depict easily identifiable characteristics of homosexuality. However, the two aforementioned models fail to include many other participants in homosexuality. The minoritizing and universalizing attitudes both foreground the dimension of sexuality and marginalize that of gender. Homosexuality is often reduced to a matter solely of sexuality. Thus, the third and fourth models in Sedgwick’s chart, which concern gender rather than sexuality, deserve special attention. The third model, “gender separatist,” is marked by separating the male gender from the female gender; the fourth model, “transitive,” integrates those who literally, metaphorically, or politically transgress the gender divide. With the same sex as the master sign, the reader in search of homosexuality in Taiwanese literature tends to be obsessed with love or sexual acts between persons of the same sex and may therefore overlook the messages associated neither with romantic love nor with sexual longings. In Taiwanese literature, affections that are not necessarily romantic or erotic, located in singlesex environments such as the army or all-girl high schools, belong to the third model separating the two genders, whereas gay men who adore fabulous divas would fall under the fourth model, which integrates the two genders.
Relation: Perverse Taiwan, Routledge Research on Gender in Asia Series, Routledge, pp.44-63
Data Type: book/chapter
Appears in Collections:[臺灣文學研究所 ] 專書/專書篇章

Files in This Item:

File Description SizeFormat

All items in 學術集成 are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved.

社群 sharing