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Protest and Dissent

Conflicting Spaces in Translation and Culture


Edited By Agnieszka Pantuchowicz and Anna Warso

Essays collected in this book discuss textual and discursive formulations of dominance and resistance. The authors analyze how they are narrated and re-narrated, framed and reframed in different social, political and language communities and realities, through different media and means, and translated into different contexts and languages. As the ways we name, rename, or label events, people and places have implications in the real world, the essays are also meant to investigate the ways in which we partake in negotiating its construction, its changing meanings and senses through the stories we tell and the practices we live by.

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Re-triangulating Triangles: Homoerotic Desire in Marilyn Hacker’s Sonnet Cycle


Love, Death, and the Changing of the Seasons

Abstract: The article explores the question of protest and dissent in Marilyn Hacker’s sonnet cycle Love, Death, and the Changing of the Seasons by examining her structural arrangement that can be seen as a re-triangulating of heterosexual triangles. Taking a psychoanalytic stance, mainly Freudian and Lacanian, the paper investigates to what extent Hacker’s poetry deconstructs canonical triangles, i.e., the archetypal triangle of courtly love, the traditional Oedipal triangle and the nuclear family triangle, thereby breaking with heteronormative prohibitions.

Keywords: sonnet, psychoanalysis, triangular desire, compulsory heterosexuality

Marilyn Hacker (1942–) is an American award-winning poet, feminist and lesbian activist. She is a representative of New Formalism – a late twentieth-century literary movement which sought to revive traditional forms of verse. Thematically Hacker’s confessional poetry deals with the experience of loss, often at the death of her friends to breast cancer or AIDS. In the volume of poetry Love, Death, and the Changing of the Seasons (1986), Hacker recounts her own experience of a lesbian love affair with her student who is seventeen years younger and is engaged initially in a relationship with another woman. She uses primarily the form of the Petrarchan sonnet to express feelings of love, desire, and sorrow caused by the eventual break-up of the relationship. Hacker’s speaking persona – a mother of an eleven-year old girl – has gone through a history of ambiguous relationships with at least one man and five women. These relationships...

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