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Postmodern Texts and Emotional Audiences: Identity and the Politics of Feeling (Paperback)Kimberly Chabot Davis (author)
Paperback 240 Pages / Published: 30/10/2007
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In her book ""Postmodern Texts and Emotional Audiences"", Chabot Davis analyzes contemporary texts that bond together two seemingly antithetical sensibilities: the sentimental and the postmodern. Ranging across multiple media and offering a methodological union of textual analysis and reception study, Chabot Davis presents case studies of audience responses to ""The Piano"" (film), ""Kiss of the Spider Woman"" (novel, film, and musical), and ""Northern Exposure"" (television series). Emerging in the late- 1980s and 1990s amidst public debates about identity politics and multiculturalism, these texts encouraged critical thinking about the political stakes of identity construction and resonated with audiences grappling with the postmodern critique of essentialist conceptions of the self. Chabot Davis argues that sentimental postmodernism deepened leftist political engagement by moving audiences to identify emotionally with people across the divisions of gender, sexual identity, race, and ethnicity. By focusing on postmodern melodramas that foster cross-group empathy and encourage utopian desires for a pluralistic society, this study questions the critical equation of postmodernism with apocalyptic nihilism and political apathy. The book also challenges the assumption that sentimentality and sympathy are inherently conservative and imperialistic. While identification is often viewed as a retrograde tool of popular culture, Chabot Davis' comparative cultural and ethnographic study uncovers the capacity of identification to dislodge people from fixed and limiting identities and to work as an agent of social change.
Publisher: Purdue University Press
Number of pages: 240
Weight: 376 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 15 mm
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