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By David Savran
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Extra info for Communists, Cowboys and Queers: Politics of Masculinity in the Work of Arthur Miller and Tennessee Williams
According to Irigaray, hom(m)o-sexuality describes the system of exchange under patriarchy that always refers "the production of women, signs and commodities . . 59 It helps one to understand how, throughout his plays, women function as objects of men's desire, like the mare and newborn colt in Biff's fantasmatic corral, denied access to the most Utopian and unsatisfiable desires that circulate solely among men, in their collective dreams of freedom and self-sufficiency. Although Death of a Salesman foregrounds hom(m)o-sexual desire, it does not by any means unequivocally endorse the Utopian idylls of Willy and Biff.
And he had his tuxedo on ... and made us all sit down; and he told us it was all gone. And she vomited. Slight pause. His horror and pity twist in his voice. All over his arms. His hands. Just kept on vomiting, like thirty-five years coming up. And he sat there. 65 Throughout Miller's work, the female body is constantly in danger of overflowing its limits. It is unstable and unfixed, its boundaries always in dispute, its interior—constitued indifferently of speech, sexual desire, or partially digested food—always threatening to erupt and engulf men in a sea of laughter, chaos, and stink.
W. E. "5 Beginning with the plays he wrote as a student at the University of Michigan during the 1930s, Miller has consistently dedicated his writing to the exploration of manifestly political issues, including the alienation and commodification of the individual subject in bourgeois society, the mechanics of ostracism, and the ethics of informing on one's colleagues. As a renowned advocate and intellectual, he has persevered in his political activism for more than fifty years, working as a delegate for Eugene McCarthy in 1968, serving as president of International PEN, and protesting in support of persecuted and imprisoned writers in Turkey, the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia, and numerous other countries.
Communists, Cowboys and Queers: Politics of Masculinity in the Work of Arthur Miller and Tennessee Williams by David Savran