Theses Doctoral

Points of Contact: Reading Clarice Lispector in Contemporary Italian Feminist Philosophy

Fraga, Mariana

This project follows a thread of citations of the work of Brazilian author Clarice Lispector found in the philosophical feminist texts of four European thinkers: Hélène Cixous, Luisa Muraro, Adriana Cavarero, and Rosi Braidotti. I explore the intersection of material feminisms, Latin American decolonial feminism, and sexual difference theory differentially and multiply across contexts. I revisit histories of women and texts - French, Italian and Brazilian - that are multiply and differentially marginalized in the current Western feminist narrative framework - in order to create sources of alternative knowledge and create an opportunity for something new to emerge symbio-creatively from these points of contact. Chapter One covers the genesis of European feminist approaches to Lispector’s oeuvre in France, the impassioned reading by Hélène Cixous of Lispector’s work, and also provides vital counter-memory, decolonial feminist stories on Brazilian and Latin American feminisms which have been left out of the dominant Anglo-American/Western feminist historical narrative. Chapter Two will focus on the arrival in Italy of Lispector’s texts, Luisa Muraro and the Diotima women’s feminist philosophy group’s readings. Chapter Three then covers Adriana Cavarero, as well as her split from said Diotima group. Finally, Chapter Four brings us to Rosi Braidotti, from her early texts on Lispector to present theoretical horizons. My concluding discussion stems from the idea of connections as posited by Sonia Alvarez: “a translocal feminist politics of translation is crucial to the decolonial turn and a key strategy in building ‘connectant epistemologies’ in order to confront the equivocations or mistranslations that hinder feminist alliances, even among women who share the same language and culture.” I expand on my theory of points of contact and explore possibilities of symbiosis and non-deterministic evolution as a theoretical tool.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Thesis Advisors
Leake, Elizabeth
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
October 24, 2017