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Marlene Kadar's Life Writing: Feminist Theory Outside the Lines

Marlene Kadar's Life Writing: Feminist Theory Outside the Lines

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Title: Marlene Kadar's Life Writing: Feminist Theory Outside the Lines
Author: Rak, Julie
Abstract: In 1992, as part of her landmark collection Essays on Life Writing: From Genre to Critical
Practice, Marlene Kadar published the essay "Whose Life Is It Anyway? Out of the Bathtub
and Into the Narrative." When taken with her introduction to the volume, Kadar created what
should be a touchstone for everyone working in the field of life writing today. Kadar was the
first critic to frame life writing as a way to name a genre and a critical practice together, but
major works in life writing criticism focus only on life writing as a more capacious term for
autobiographical and biographical representation, neglecting the ethics of criticism Kadar
sought to bring to the study of the area and not crediting Kadar for the first feminist use of
the term. I propose to remedy this gap in the life writing critical literature by reading Kadar's two early essays alongside her essay "The Devouring. Traces of Roma in the Holocaust: No Tattoo, Sterilized Body, Gypsy Girl" to see how Kadar thinks about life writing as a method that is deeply socially responsible to the texts, and to the traces of life that can be found in
ephemeral documents.
Subject: Marlene Kadar
life writing
autobiography
Type: Abstract
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10315/33676
Date: 2017-05-15

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