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Shared SelvesLatinx Memoir and Ethical Alternatives to Humanism$
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Suzanne Bost

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780252042799

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.5622/illinois/9780252042799.001.0001

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John Rechy, Depersonalization, and Queer Selves

(p.45) Chapter 2 Community
Shared Selves

Suzanne Bost

University of Illinois Press

Analyzes the multiplication of autobiographical subjects in Rechy’s memoir (About My Life and the Kept Woman) as well as in his fiction, an interactive CD-ROM he helped produce, and performance art inspired by Rechy. These texts revolve around queer communal spaces, prefiguring contemporary theoretical work by Samuel Delaney and Judith/Jack Halberstam. Though Rechy and his characters claim to be narcissists, a vast web of connections links them to a cacophonous network of people, streets, parks, bars, animals, deserts, dirt, and garbage. Landscapes and seemingly marginal characters take the foreground at points and blend with the life of the supposedly central male protagonist. These blended agencies, the author argues, depersonalize the self.

Keywords:   John Rechy, queer theory, queer space, queer community, depersonalization

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