Hélène Cixous did not mince words when she published “Le Rire de la Méduse” (“The Laugh of the Medusa) in , where she claimed that. In her seminal work “The Laugh of the Medusa” feminist thinker Helene Cixous deals with the topic of feminine writing. Her main point in the. Hélène Cixous, in “The Laugh of the Medusa,” advocates new ways of thinking and writing about women and literature. The essay has become a staple of.

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This is the concept that explains how language relies on a hierarchical system that values the spoken helenr over the written word in Western culture.

May Learn how and when to remove this template message. My sexuality was symphonic. I haven’t thought about it before Laugn and Cixous but there is a certain difference. It was about care, and love. Is this a real feminist answer to sexual inequality? This is why Cixous thinks she has the potential to take apart a unified, hegemonic and organized thinking of history.

Hélène Cixous and the myth of Medusa

But Cixous makes that voice die down, her arguments made me not care about masculine expectations of what “good” writing is. Jun 05, Eftihia S. Crowned with venomous serpents and endowed with a fatal gaze, the monstrous Medusa stands out as an interesting historical figure because she has survived the centuries as a symbol of seduction he,ene power, as muse, feminist and castration threat.


On the general-historical level a woman’s writing marks her active entrance into history has an agent with initiative. Cixous wants to break the rules of the game by not defining what feminine writing is, since any theorization of it will fall into the subordination of phalluscentric economy. There are already more than enough carefully studied, scholarly words cluttering up the intellectual ether. In introducing her Wellek Lecture, subsequently published as Three Steps on the Ladder of WritingDerrida referred to her as the greatest living writer in his language French.

Infollowing the French student riotsCixous was charged cixohs founding the University of Paris VIII”created to serve as an alternative to the traditional French academic environment. It’s up to him to say where his masculinity and femininity are at. Your continent is dark.

You may also like. She also demonstrates how feminine writing can look like through the text itself.

I wanted knowledge; it gave me ‘Truth’. He also hit and punched and kicked me, my difference. As women have gained more rights the past few decades, we’ve forgotten how much women have suffered throughout history and how much of that oppression is still in our society, and in our own subconscious.

While the essay was originally published inMedusa remains a figure of the present. He lived the only life he knew, the only world, but it was a world from which I was precluded by my own ‘I-hood’. Even though she comes off a little bit essentialist a la Simone de BeauvoirI think it’s a refreshing look at feminism.


Her academic works concern subjects of feminism, the human body, history, death and theatre. Cixous also holds that the woman always preserves someone else’s potency. She instructs women to use writing as a means of authority.

As a subject of history the woman has always functioned in several positions. Keith Cohen and Paula Cohen, Dangerous, dark, obscure, unknown. The essay also calls for an acknowledgment of universal bisexuality or polymorphous perversity, a precursor of queer theory’s later emphases, and swiftly rejects many kinds of essentialism which were still common in Anglo-American feminism at the time.

Cultural Reader: Short summary: The Laugh of the Medusa / Helene Cixous

If I must, I can accept that as ‘man’, I write ‘man’, but mine is a dialect that as yet even I hardly recognize. Vivek Kumar September 29, at 2: Oct 19, Anushka rated it really liked it Shelves: I knew they were writing under siege.

Boys developing their creativity, their self-expression. It was about inventiveness; about finding new and interesting things about my partner, and about myself. Is the mevusa fatale in popular culture being reclaimed as an empowering form of female sexuality?