Female Sexuality, Desire and Writing as Reflected in the Poetry of Carol Ann Duffy


  • Spandita Das PG Student and UGC NET JRF Qualifier, Department of English School of Humanities, University of Hyderabad (Central University), Hyderabad, India




This study attempts to explore the heterogeneity of desires and sexualities as reflected in Carol Ann Duffy’s poetry. I show (a) how she simultaneously depicts both lesbian and heterosexual desires and (b) also addresses their problematic aspects. I argue that (c) female subjectivities are constructed both through wives’ monologues about their male partners as in heterosexual marriages and through men’s reflection upon women in male-voiced monologues as well. But I also (d) examine poems where the expression of desire in language and—not the sexed subjects—is her principal aim. Yet in the light of my previous exposition on female subjectivities, I refuse to reduce her various sexual positions to mere linguistic constructs. Finally I demonstrate (e) how her equal employment of ‘soft’ and ‘tough’ words veers from any systematic development of a pure ‘common’ female language.


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How to Cite

Das, S. (2020). Female Sexuality, Desire and Writing as Reflected in the Poetry of Carol Ann Duffy. SMART MOVES JOURNAL IJELLH, 8(7), 105–127. https://doi.org/10.24113/ijellh.v8i7.10663