Family Likeness in the TLS

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Miranda El-Rayess reviewed Family Likeness: Sex, Marriage, and Incest from Jane Austen to Virginia Woolf in the April 17, 2009 issue of the TLS. Here’s a quote:

“Corbett’s readings of Victorian novels are informed by Foucault and Judith Butler, and illuminated by intersecting contemporary economic, religious, racial, class, biological, and anthropological discourses. Drawing on a fascinating range of primary documentation, she emphasizes the ‘stringent limits to what we can know,’ pointing out, for example, that incestuous sexual abuse came to be regarded as a working-class, or ‘savage,’ phenomenon partly because white middle-class homes escaped surveillance. One of Corbett’s strengths lies in her determination to contest ‘static versions of the past’ and expose its ‘messiness and complexity’ in order to gain a better understanding of the ways in which women authors invoked and modified fictions of kinship.”

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