Swimming: Writing Childlessness, a Novel and Exegesis

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enza_phd_thesis2.pdf - Accepted Version (3MB)

Gandolfo, Enza (2004) Swimming: Writing Childlessness, a Novel and Exegesis. PhD thesis, Victoria University.


This thesis includes two volumes: The novel, Swimming, in the first volume, is the fictional narrative of one woman's life and her experience of being childless. Kate, the protagonist of the novel, is not me though she has a number of similar experiences. Kate is the subject of her own narrative, a woman, whose existence presents an alternative figuration of the childless woman. The exegesis, the second volume, is a theoretical exploration and interrogation of the process of my feminist fiction writing as manifest in the writing of Swimming. Crucial to the development of both texts is the relationship between the real childless woman and the desire to represent the real childless woman's experience. In this sense real is used to denote the embodied (flesh and blood) individual woman without children. However, this notion of real is not what Stuart Hall refers to as 'a traditional' view of 'the subject' whereby the individual is seen to be 'fully endowed with consciousness; an autonomous and stable entity' (Hall 1997:55). In this thesis, the individual subject is understood to be complex and multiple; woman is understood to be a 'subject-in-process' (Braidotti 2002: 12); and subjectivity an 'ongoing construction, not a fixed point of departure or arrival from which one interacts with the world' (de Lauretis 1984: 159).

Additional Information

This is the second volume from a research thesis in two volumes submitted in total fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy

Item type Thesis (PhD thesis)
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/2057
Subjects Historical > RFCD Classification > 220000 Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts-General
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Communication and the Arts
Keywords childless, infertility, narrative, subjectivity, creative writing
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