Tales of female sexuality and scandal : Lauren Beukes’s “Princess” and archived asylum texts

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dc.contributor.author Du Plessis, Rory
dc.date.accessioned 2021-04-16T10:09:57Z
dc.date.issued 2020
dc.description.abstract In the short story “Princess” (Slipping: Stories, Essays and Other Writing. San Francisco: Tachyon, 2016), Lauren Beukes presents a tale of a princess who discovers her clitoris. Subsequent to this discovery, the princess's sexuality rapidly develops to encompass the pleasures derived from autoeroticism, as well as the sexual acts performed by her handmaid. Yet, the princess's sexual pleasure is only one part of the story. The other part is how society recoils in shock and engages in vehement scolding of the princess's expression of female sexual pleasure. Beukes's tale sparked my curiosity to explore narratives of female sexuality in archived texts. Such an undertaking is motivated by the dearth of historical studies of female sexuality in South Africa. One case in point is the study of female sexuality in the Victorian period, where the primary focus of academic scholarship is on rape and sexual violence. In this article, I seek to broaden the South African narratives of female sexuality in the late nineteenth century to include aspects pertaining to pleasure, as well as to enumerate how female sexual desire was often tied to scandals, public shock, and transgressions of femininity. To achieve this goal, I offer a micro-study of female sexuality at the Grahamstown Lunatic Asylum. en_ZA
dc.description.department Visual Arts en_ZA
dc.description.embargo 2022-03-25
dc.description.librarian hj2021 en_ZA
dc.description.uri http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/rscr20 en_ZA
dc.identifier.citation Rory du Plessis (2020) Tales of Female Sexuality and Scandal: Lauren Beukes’s “Princess” and Archived Asylum Texts, Scrutiny2, 25:2, 40-56, DOI:10.1080/18125441.2020.1824244. en_ZA
dc.identifier.issn 1812-5441 (print)
dc.identifier.issn 1753-5409 (online)
dc.identifier.other 10.1080/18125441.2020.1824244
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2263/79472
dc.language.iso en en_ZA
dc.publisher Taylor and Francis en_ZA
dc.rights © Unisa Press 2021. This is an electronic version of an article published in Scrutiny2 , vol. 25, no. 2, pp. 40-56, 2020. doi : 10.1080/18125441.2020.1824244. Scrutiny2 is available online at : http://www.tandfonline.comloi/rscr20. en_ZA
dc.subject Autoeroticism en_ZA
dc.subject Lauren Beukes (1976- ) en_ZA
dc.subject Female sexuality en_ZA
dc.subject Grahamstown Lunatic Asylum en_ZA
dc.subject Masturbation en_ZA
dc.subject Nymphomania en_ZA
dc.subject Nineteenth century en_ZA
dc.subject South Africa (SA) en_ZA
dc.title Tales of female sexuality and scandal : Lauren Beukes’s “Princess” and archived asylum texts en_ZA
dc.type Postprint Article en_ZA


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