• First Language: Turkish

  • Subjects:  Women’s Studies

  • Journal Section: Research Article

  • Authors: Muzaffer Derya NAZLIPINAR SUBAŞI

  • Dates: 1 January 2009

Articulating The Unspeakable Female Body in Orlando Female experience and body has always been defined and ill-treated as deviant by the dominant patriarchal structure and its sexist language. It is the ‘dark continent’ full of indefinable things, like female sexuality and textuality that must be avoided. That is why, the expression of female desire has always been ignored and/or disguised in male texts. However, today is high time women, having been estranged from their bodies and sexualities throughout history with the terrifying myth of Medusa, emerged from their deep sleep and seek the ways of resisting linguistic, historical, and sexual confinements placed on them. To be able to realize and extend that resistance, they have endeavoured to create a new feminine rhetoric, which is only possible through writing with a female language and through the reclamation of the female body. Virginia Woolf, being one of the first woman writers, noticing and understanding the relationship between dominant male ideology and language, knows the inexpressibility of the female body and the parallel improbability of a female text through a borrowed man-made language. Hence, Woolf focuses on the ways of creating a feminine rhetoric and a female language that could express female desire and body. This study, focusing on Virginia Woolf’s Orlando, aims to present the practices of de con structing the internalized fear of rejection and inferiority of women, and establishing a new, female-oriented tradition through articulating the unspeakable female body written in a female language, which creates multiple meanings and fluid identities.