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Date Permissions Signed
Date of Award
Masters Thesis (Campus-Only Access)
Department or Program Affiliation
Master of Fine Arts (MFA)
Colen, Elizabeth J.
Body Imagery is a collection of stories and essays that interrogates the cultural expectations for women and their lived-in bodies. This collection moves between memoir, realism, and speculative fiction to explore the places where personal desires and imposed sexist narratives grind together. The pieces in this collection explore the choice to have or not to have children, and the internal, sexual, and embodied experiences of queer and bisexual women. This collection explores the subjectivity of embodied, flawed, and messy female characters, and considers how their internal narratives conflict and collide with the perspectives of others. From a story about a teenager grappling with her sexuality in a world where the nights disappear, to an essay meditating on the social and political implications of becoming a wife, Body Imagery dives into the tension between the public body and the private one. This collection explores what it means for women to experience desire, agency, pain, and illness, and to make choices about their bodies that don’t fit into patriarchal cultural narratives, or— to make choices that do.
feminist, cross-genre, body, sex, queer & bisexual, body image, memoir, fiction, motherhood/daughterhood, speculative fiction
Western Washington University
Subject – LCSH
Body image in women--Social aspects--Fiction; Creative writing
Copying of this document in whole or in part is allowable only for scholarly purposes. It is understood, however, that any copying or publication of this document for commercial purposes, or for financial gain, shall not be allowed without the author’s written permission.
Howell, Eleanor, "Body Imagery: Stories and Essays" (2020). WWU Graduate School Collection. 934.