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Spatial parody, theatricalisation and constructions of ‘self’ in Patricia Highsmith’s the price of salt and Carson McCullers’ the ballad of the sad cafe

Piper, FL 2013, 'Spatial parody, theatricalisation and constructions of ‘self’ in Patricia Highsmith’s the price of salt and Carson McCullers’ the ballad of the sad cafe' , in: Women in Transit Through Literary Liminal Spaces , Palgrave Macmillan, London & New York, pp. 151-165.

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Abstract

This essay considers the ways in which Highsmith and McCullers use theatricalisation of space to suspend the distinction between public and private as a defining trope in gender construction. Both texts, I argue, explore ‘transit’ as space/place that both resists and reinstates that public/private binary, through the use of what I term ‘spatial parody’. In The Price of Salt (1952) numerous cafes, restaurants and hotels provide a backdrop for the unfolding of a forbidden (lesbian) romance. In The Ballad of the Sad Café (1943) McCullers foregrounds the café itself and interrogates the relationship between ownership of space, gender performance and selfhood.

Item Type: Book Section
Editors: Gomez Reuz, T and Gifford, T
Uncontrolled Keywords: Highsmith; McCullers; lesbian; perform; parody; gender; ‘third sphere’
Themes: Memory, Text and Place
Schools: Schools > School of Humanities, Languages & Social Sciences > Centre for English Literature and Language
Schools > School of Arts & Media
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
Refereed: Yes
ISBN: 9781137330468
Funders: Palgrave Macmillan
Depositing User: FL Piper
Date Deposited: 15 Oct 2013 17:27
Last Modified: 30 Nov 2015 23:35
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/29557

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