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To make his case, Kramer uses operatic lovedeaths, Beethoven's "Kreutzer Sonata" and the Tolstoy novella named after it the writings of Walt Whitman and Alfred Lord Tennyson, psychoanalysis, and the logic of dreams. In formal and informal reflections, he explores the self-contradictions of masculinity, the shifting alignments of femininity, authority, and desire, and the interdependency of hetero- and homosexuality. At the same time, he imagines alternatives that could allow gender to be freed from the existing system of polarities that inevitably promote sexual violence.
Kramer's writing avoids the conventional dress of intellectual authority and moves between music and literature in a style that is both intimate and effective. He combines informed scholarship with candid personal utterance and makes clear what is at stake in this crucial debate. After the Lovedeath will have a profound impact on anyone interested in new ways to think about gender.
Library of Congress subject headings for this publication: Sex role, Sex crimes Psychological aspects, Women Crimes against Psychological aspects, Masculinity, Femininity, Sex role in art, Violence in art, Sex in art, Sex in music