Epistemology of the Closet

by Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick

Paperback, 1991


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University of California Press (1991), Paperback, 272 pages


Since the late 1980s, queer studies and theory have become vital to the intellectual and political life of the United States. This has been due, in no small degree, to the influence of Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick's critically acclaimed Epistemology of the Closet. Working from classic texts of European and American writers--including Melville, James, Nietzsche, Proust, and Wilde--Sedgwick analyzes a turn-of-the-century historical moment in which sexual orientation became as important a demarcation of personhood as gender had been for centuries. In her preface to this updated edition Sedgwick places the book both personally and historically, looking specifically at the horror of the first wave of the AIDS epidemic and its influence on the text.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member AlexTheHunn
This is a tour-de-force examination of epistemological questions as they arise from and pertain to the closet - in which homosexual may live sheltered, private lives. I confess that as no trained philosopher, her intricate paths sometimes make me re-read her arguments in order to grasp her meaning. Other times, I find myself moving on in wonder. Yet what I can understand is well worth my time and trouble. She re-evaluates and questions what it means to be gay or straight - not sexually but in society, in one's existence.… (more)

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Physical description

272 p.; 6 inches


0520078748 / 9780520078741
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