The celebrated author of Gender Trouble here redefines Antigone's legacy, recovering her revolutionary significance and liberating it for a progressive feminism and sexual politics. Antigone has long been a feminist icon of defiance. But what has remained unclear is whether she escapes from the forms of power that she opposes, since the form of defiance she exemplifies also leads to her death. Butler argues that Antigone represents a form of feminist and sexual agency that is fraught with risk. Moreover, Antigone shows how a culture of normative heterosexuality obstructs our capacity to see what sexual freedom and political agency could be.
Presents the text of three of Butler's (rhetoric and comparative literature, U. of California-Berkeley) 1998 lectures exploring the meaning of Antigone. Questioning what forms of kinship might have allowed Antigone to live, Butler discusses the work of philosophers including Hegel, Lacan, and Irigaray and discusses how a culture of normative heterosexuality obstructs our capacity to see what sexual and political agency could be. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)