Year:2023 Volume: 8 Issue: 2 Area: Language, Literature & Linguistics

Sreelakshmi Renjith
Pleasure of Pain: Interrogating the Concept of Masochism in Jean Rhys Novels, pp.1-9.
The novels of Jean Rhys (1890-1979), published in the 1900s, championed a new corpus of feminist writing, with emphasis laid on the trials and tribulations of twentieth-century women. The psychological trauma experienced by women because of contemporary social codes, forms the prime concern of Rhys, presenting a unique way of tackling gender issues. This article explores the masochistic tendencies that constantly overshadow Rhys works in the context of female characters relishing their bleak, morbid life. Through a detailed analysis of her novels Quartet (1928) and Good Morning, Midnight (1939), the article argues that Rhys use of masochism is a literary device meant to emphasize the magnanimity of the female personae, as opposed to the sexually pervasive masochism identified by twentieth-century psychoanalytic theorists.

Keywords: Masochism, Perversion, Sexuality, Trauma, Transgression
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