Regional aesthetics : the formation of identities and stereotypes in the fiction of Grace King and Kate Chopin

Title: Regional aesthetics : the formation of identities and stereotypes in the fiction of Grace King and Kate Chopin
Author: Pegues, Dagmar
Source document: Brno studies in English. 2009, vol. 35, iss. 1, pp. [147]-172
Extent
[147]-172
  • ISSN
    0524-6881 (print)
    1805-0867 (online)
Type: Article
Language
English
License: Not specified license
Abstract(s)
This article proposes to augment the existing feminist perspectives on the works of Grace King and Kate Chopin, two Louisiana fin-de-siècle authors, with region-specific aesthetic and epistemic categories - particularly the category of race - by illuminating the formation of regional identities and stereotypes. This examination is informed primarily by the trend of "new aesthetics" and its distinction between local and global aesthetics, and it aims to examine the recurring category of ambiguity arising from feminist interpretations of Chopin's and King's fiction. Utilizing the cultural theory of Pierre Bourdieu to distinguish between the origination/application aesthetic judgement, the fetishization of whiteness is seen as the underlying impulse for regional aesthetic judgments in King's "Little Convent Girl" and "Monsieur Motte", and Chopin's "Desiree's Baby" and, by analogy, in Chopin's master novel, The Awakening.
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