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Synergy I: Marginalisation, Discrimination, Isolation and Existence in Literature

Edited By A.Nejat Töngür and Yıldıray Çevik

Studies on the distinguished works of English and American literature of various genres like poetry, plays and fiction are included in this book focusing on and around the central themes of “Marginalisation, Discrimination, Isolation, and Existence.” The aim of the book is to investigate the issues of “Marginalisation, Discrimination, Isolation, and Existence” within the frameworks of gender, colonization, multiculturalism, religion, race, generation gap, politics, technology, immigration, and class.

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IV: VICTORIAN HYPOCRITICAL SEXUAL POLITICS: SARAH WATERS’ TIPPING THE VELVET (Duygu SERDAROĞLU)

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Duygu SERDAROĞLU

Abstract: Being classified as a historical and a Neo-Victorian novel, Sarah Waters’ Tipping the Velvet (1998) is set in the late 19th century, the late 1880s and the 1890s, Victorian England. The novel explores the boundaries of gender roles, sex and romance in the Victorian era by depicting the marginalised and ostracised existence of the female same-sex lovers. The novel foregrounds the hypocrisy hidden behind the seemingly impeccable Victorian values, norms and beliefs concerning ethics, morality and certain behaviours defining gender roles. The author sheds light on the “other” side of the Victorian society through her protagonist, Nancy Astley (Nan King), and her same-sex partners from different classes. Nancy, together with her lovers defy the long-established Victorian view which stigmatised lesbian intercourse as perversion. Waters puts particular emphasis on class distinction while depicting her protagonist wandering in London streets among various queer characters from different classes. The author’s aim in so doing is to show that what was deemed to be perversion is not exclusive to one social class. The novel, in a sense, urges the reader to reconsider the stereotyped image of femininity and masculinity. Thus, the author offers an alternative perspective to the figure of lesbian which was then regarded as an unspeakable and abominable sickness. The aim of this study is to dwell on the hypocritical handling of gender stereotyping which is pertinent to not only Victorian era but also present day. Judith Butler’s queer theory and gender performativity and Michel Foucault’s...

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