This Perversion Called Love: Reading Tanizaki, Feminist Theory, and Freud
- Publish Date: 2009-10-08
- Binding: Hardcover
- Author: Margherita Long
This Perversion Called Love positions one of Japan's most canonical and best translated 20th century authors at the center of contemporary debates in feminism. Examining sexual perversion in Tanizaki's aesthetic essays, cultural criticism, cinema writings and short novels from the 1930s, it argues that Tanizaki understands human subjectivity in remarkably Freudian terms, but that he is much more critical than Freud about what it means for the possibility of love. According to Tanizaki, perversion involves not the proliferation of interesting gender positions, but rather the tragic absence of even two sexes, since femininity is only defined as man's absence, supplement, or complement. In this fascinating work, author Margherita Long reads Tanizaki with a theoretical complexity he demands but has seldom received. As a critique of the historicist and gender-focused paradigms that inform much recent work in Japanese literary and cultural studies, This Perversion Called Love offers exciting new interpretations that should spark controversy in the fields of feminist theory and critical Asian studies.