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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Embodying experience and agency in Yvonne Vera's 'Without a name' and 'Butterfly burning'
Author:Musila, GraceISNI
Year:2007
Periodical:Research in African Literatures
Volume:38
Issue:2
Pages:49-63
Language:English
Geographic term:Zimbabwe
Subjects:women writers
novels
women
body
About person:Yvonne Vera (1965-2005)ISNI
Link:http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/research_in_african_literatures/v038/38.2musila.pdf
Abstract:This paper reflects on how the corporeality of women's bodies frames their experiences, options, and choices. Through a reading of Yvonne Vera's 'Without a name' and 'Butterfly burning', the paper suggests that Vera explores interactions between discursive practices and the embodied experience of these discourses for women living on the extreme margins of society (Zimbabwe). This reading suggests that these women's lived experiences as played out by, and on their bodies, are central in shaping the choices they make and their exercise of agency. Further, these women's responses, while appealing to seemingly extravagant and melodramatic tropes, in the contexts of their circumstances articulate a radical reconceptualization of agency and resistance. Most remarkably, Vera's women force us to rethink ideas about nature/sex/body as rigid and immutable, and therefore an unviable site of intervention in gender struggles. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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