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A geographer reads Geography Club: spatial metaphor and metonym in textual/sexual space

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Brown, Michael

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Abstract In this paper I offer a geographer's reading of Brent Hartinger's American teen novel Geography Club. My intellectual aim is to extend work on the spatialities of the closet, especially those that appreciate both its fixity and fluidity in space. I do this by drawing out the spatial metonymy around closet space, alongside its metaphoric-material dimensions. Specifically, my reading focuses on four themes to achieve this aim: (a) the ubiquity of spatial language throughout the text, of which closet space is one part, (b) the materiality of the closet space in the narrative, (c) the metaleptic and synechdochal qualities of metonymy between the closet and the world, and (d) the placeless and fluidity as important signifiers of the closet in the main character's experience. These insights are not only meant to advance spatial understandings of the closet in more complex and dynamic ways, but also to prompt conversation between cultural studies, queer theory, and human geography.
Classification Economic and Social Geography; Ethnology, Cultural Anthropology, Ethnosociology
Publication Year 2006
Page/Pages p. 313-339
Journal Cultural Geographies, 13 (2006) 3
Status Postprint; peer reviewed
Licence PEER Licence Agreement (applicable only to documents from PEER project)