Love is always a cigar: Gatsby and Fight Club with recourse to freud AND Britney, Lolita, and the American morality fetish

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Bryan Patrick Turley (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Scott Romine

Abstract: This study seeks to trace the trajectory of American sexuality and gender identity as they relate to late capitalism. Meditating on the intertextuality of The Great Gatsby and Fight Club and on the cultural trajectory depicted in the novels, I will argue that the American myth of exceptionalism comes at the expense of the female body. Inasmuch as the grounding principle of the American dream is the freedom to garner capital and to consume and inasmuch as the female body symbolically figures the American landscape, the American identity is traumatized. Examining the text of Lolita and the commodification of the image of Lolita vis-à-vis a "reading" of the pop-stardom and social controversy of Britney Spears, I will argue that the trauma issues in a morality fetish - a condemnation of the overt sexuality of the young girl that represses the guilt of complicity in the very culture and economy that collude to exploit her in the first place.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2010
Fight Club, The Great Gatsby, Lolita, Britney Spears, Female sexuality, Literary analysis, American exceptionalism
Sexuality $z United States.
Literature, Modern.
Exceptionalism $z United States $x History.
Masculinity in literature.
Gender identity in literature.
Sex in literature.
Women in literature.

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