Petryifying the Will

It Petrifies the Will: Sexual Politics and Radical Women’s Writing in the 1960s

Critiquing the phenomenology of womanhood through autobiographical writings by radically feminist authors — Sylvia Plath, Valerie Solanas, Candy Darling, and Rita Mae Brown with Muriel Spark as a foundation — as developed during the “sexual revolution” in the years after Beauvoir. It’s been fashionable to neatly summarise this era as a singular ‘second wave feminism’. However, a closer examination of the personal reflections in the various genres employed by these authors reveal diverse and controversial narratives of embodiment. In these instances pressing evaluations of materiality and femininity appear, a sexual revolution of skin and mind that underline all contemporary debates on womanhood and identity.

(In progess, more information — including a chapter synopsis — forthcoming)

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