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IngratitudeThe Debt-Bound Daughter in Asian American Literature$
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erin Khuê Ninh

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780814758441

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814758441.001.0001

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Desirable Daughters

Desirable Daughters

Fae Myenne Ng, Elaine Mar, Chitra Divakaruni

(p.125) 4 Desirable Daughters

erin Khuê Ninh

NYU Press

This chapter provides a reading of Chitra Divakaruni's “The Word Love” and Fae Myenne Ng's Bone to examine the formation of the daughterly subject in relation to the family's exceptional structural investment in female chastity. Anthropological work on chastity has long suggested a material basis and rationale for the cultural management of virginity, but these studies have tended to theorize the economic and social systems in which female bodies circulate without theorizing the female subject. Combining such anthropological perspectives with the techniques of literary criticism, the chapter develops a Foucauldian analysis of the administration of sexuality and a rendering of the young woman thereby produced: a paranoid and self-policing subject, commended to herself as object.

Keywords:   Chitra Divakaruni, The Word Love, Fae Ng, Bone, daughterly subject, female chastity, virginity, female subject, sexuality

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