Disciplining Gender: Rhetorics of Sex Identity in Contemporary U.S. Culture

By John M. Sloop | Go to book overview

THREE
“So Long, Chaps and Spurs, and Howdy—er,
Bon Jour—to the Wounded Songbird”

k.d. lang, Ambiguity, and the Politics of Genre/Gender

By the early 1980s, [k.d. lang] was belting country music, first as affectionate parody and then with less and less irony; her voice, with its leisurely swoops and its aching vibrato, was made for ballads. “I always thought I was delivering emotion, ” she said. “But as I grow older I see deeper and more intense ways to deliver emotion and truth. ” Jon Pareles, “k.d. lang Leaves Metaphor Behind”

In a section of Female Masculinity in which she investigates a “postmodern butch” aesthetic, Judith Halberstam provides a short critique of Percy Adlon's film Salmonberries. Halberstam puts her most intense focus on the Alaskan orphan character Kotz, played by k.d. lang. In the midst of a revealing critique of the film, she notes that when Kotz is silent, especially in the early portions of the narrative, the character is complex in ways that bolster and complicate her masculinity, while later in the film, the character's gender and sexuality become far less complicated, easier to interpret through received or “commonsense” categories. As Halberstam puts it, early in the movie lang's Kotz “is brooding, moody, melancholic, violent, sexy, and extremely intense. As you might imagine, things go downhill once lang begins to speak, ” and the character is simultaneously transformed into a less complicated, more traditional love-stricken girl dyke (224).

While reading this section of Halberstam's argument in the context of working through a number of mass mediated articles dealing with k.d. lang as a recording artist, I could not help but be struck by the ways Halberstam's claim about the character was, and is, to some degree reflected in the public discourse surrounding k.d. lang's sexuality, gen

-83-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Disciplining Gender: Rhetorics of Sex Identity in Contemporary U.S. Culture
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 189

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.