"Aulinhas de Sedução" [Small Lessons in Seduction]: Clarice Lispector on How (Not) to Be a Woman




This article examines Brazilian writer Clarice Lispector’s contributions to the women’s pages of the newspapers Correio da Manhã and Diário da Noite between 1959 and 1961. While Lispector’s fictional output has spawned a steady flow of scholarly and academic studies from a wide array of disciplines and fields of study, her journalistic production, in particular the women’s pages she crafted under a pseudonym, has hardly received any critical attention. The “women’s page” is a fixed section in magazines and newspapers entirely dedicated to women, addressed specifically to a female readership, and generally authored by a woman or a female persona. The purpose of this article is to redress this critical oversight and complement the only study so far of this corpus – Aparecida Maria Nunes’s Clarice Lispector Jornalista – by arguing that, in Lispector’s hands, these pages become spaces of potential cultural and political intervention. Through their nuanced parody of other comparable discursive spaces and their overemphasis on what is culturally constructed as feminine, Lispector’s pages perform a transvestite gesture that unsettles normative models of femininity and dislodges a heteronormative temporality predicated upon birth, marriage, reproduction, and death.

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Copyright © 2017 Informa UK Limited. This article first appeared in Angelaki: Journal of the Theoretical Humanities, Volume 22, Issue 1, 2017.

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