Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Feminisms, Publics, and Rhetorical Indirections: Figuring Marcet Haldeman-Julius, Anita Loos, and Mae West, 1905-1930
by Barrett-Fox, Jason, Ph.D., University of Kansas, 2013, 255; 3596423
Abstract (Summary)

This work seeks to establish indirect feminist rhetoric, rhetoric that denies, elides, parodies, or co-opts its perceived exigencies, within the emergence of spectacular technologies of writing in the early 20th century, technologies that included personality journalism, scenario and screenwriting, and writing for the Broadway stage between roughly 1905 and 1930. Following the work of a cohort of indirect feminist rhetors, Marcet Haldeman-Julius, Anita Loos, and Mae West, all of whom, in different ways, wrote feminist critiques of the powerful and sometimes abusive men in their lives, often while these men functioned as the very gatekeepers to the audiences sought by these women, this dissertation challenges traditional notions that effective rhetoric takes place out in the open, with the free exchange of propositions, offering that sometimes the proliferation of rhetoric and critique is more useful in situations that circumvent the potential for reciprocal postulations, functioning counter- or even non-propositionally. Finally, in their approach to feminist critique, these indirect feminist rhetors—both in content and in style—challenge traditional feminist historiographies of what public women could say and be heard saying in the years leading up to and immediately following suffrage. In those ways, this study merges questions of rhetoric, gender, history, writing, and technology that lay the groundwork for scholars participating in the ongoing discussions of writing, rhetoric, and embodiment in digital worlds.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Farmer, Frank, Tell, Dave
Commitee: Childers, Jay, Graham, Maryemma, Kopelson, Karen, Smith Fischer, Iris
School: University of Kansas
Department: English
School Location: United States -- Kansas
Source: DAI-A 75/01(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Womens studies, Communication, Rhetoric
Keywords: Feminist rhetoric, Film history, Indirection, Rhetoric, Women
Publication Number: 3596423
ISBN: 9781303430787
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