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Type: Journal article
Title: Traveling hopefully: the utopian impulse in the fiction of Angela Carter
Author: Tonkin, M.
Citation: Contemporary Women's Writing, 2014; 9(2):219-237
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Issue Date: 2014
ISSN: 1754-1476
Statement of
Maggie Tonkin
Abstract: Angela Carter’s political allegiances would seem to align her with the utopian, yet in the view of most critics, her relation to utopia is somewhat fraught. Utilizing Russell Jacoby’s distinction between blueprint and iconoclastic utopianism, this essay reexamines Carter’s work to show that her writing consistently negates any blueprint for an ideal society yet engages with the historical debates surrounding utopia. Although Carter refuses to endorse programmatic utopias, her work nevertheless participates in what Jacoby calls the “anarchic breeze” of iconoclastic utopianism, utopianism that gestures rather than maps or legislates (21). Drawing on Deleuze and Guattari’s notion of concept making as utopian, I argue that Carter’s utopianism lies in her writing praxis, which interpellates readers as “hopeful travelers.”
Rights: © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press; all rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail:
RMID: 0030016398
DOI: 10.1093/cww/vpu026
Appears in Collections:English publications

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