Publication

Tiny symbols tell big stories: Naming and concealing masturbation in diaries (1660-1940)

Vermeer, L., 12-Jul-2017, In : European Journal of Life Writing. 6, p. 101-134 34 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

APA

Vermeer, L. (2017). Tiny symbols tell big stories: Naming and concealing masturbation in diaries (1660-1940). European Journal of Life Writing, 6, 101-134. https://doi.org/10.5463/ejlw.6.209

Author

Vermeer, Leonieke. / Tiny symbols tell big stories : Naming and concealing masturbation in diaries (1660-1940). In: European Journal of Life Writing. 2017 ; Vol. 6. pp. 101-134.

Harvard

Vermeer, L 2017, 'Tiny symbols tell big stories: Naming and concealing masturbation in diaries (1660-1940)', European Journal of Life Writing, vol. 6, pp. 101-134. https://doi.org/10.5463/ejlw.6.209

Standard

Tiny symbols tell big stories : Naming and concealing masturbation in diaries (1660-1940). / Vermeer, Leonieke.

In: European Journal of Life Writing, Vol. 6, 12.07.2017, p. 101-134.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Vancouver

Vermeer L. Tiny symbols tell big stories: Naming and concealing masturbation in diaries (1660-1940). European Journal of Life Writing. 2017 Jul 12;6:101-134. https://doi.org/10.5463/ejlw.6.209


BibTeX

@article{b2316d6c95ba45a0997f1cd49f86623e,
title = "Tiny symbols tell big stories: Naming and concealing masturbation in diaries (1660-1940)",
abstract = "Symbols, encryptions and codes are a way to hide sensitive or highly personal content in diaries. This kind of private language is an important feature of diary practise, regardless of time and place, but it has barely been studied yet. This article highlights symbols that designate masturbation in diaries of the mid-17th century until the first half of the 20th century. These symbols are interpreted not as {\textquoteleft}silence,{\textquoteright} but as disguising, narrative strategies. They form an integral part of the text and should be studied as such. The central question is how authors by employing disguising strategies (such as symbols) in diaries position themselves within and against public discourse on masturbation. The main body of sources consists of six diaries from different national contexts. The discourse against masturbation which developed from the beginning of the 18th century was an international (Western) affair. In medical treatises and pedagogical manuals for parents, masturbation became a {\textquoteleft}total illness{\textquoteright}: a life-threatening activity that would lead to near-certain (and gruesome) death. Diary writing functioned as a medium to register and control this secret vice but the diaries also show ways to change or resist the dominant discourse. The symbols for masturbation re ect some crucial aspects of diary writing: the diary as a memory device and a medium of registry and control of bodily processes, in which private experience is connected to public discourse.",
author = "Leonieke Vermeer",
year = "2017",
month = jul,
day = "12",
doi = "10.5463/ejlw.6.209",
language = "English",
volume = "6",
pages = "101--134",
journal = "European Journal of Life Writing",
issn = "1876-8156",
publisher = " VU University Amsterdam",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - Tiny symbols tell big stories

T2 - Naming and concealing masturbation in diaries (1660-1940)

AU - Vermeer, Leonieke

PY - 2017/7/12

Y1 - 2017/7/12

N2 - Symbols, encryptions and codes are a way to hide sensitive or highly personal content in diaries. This kind of private language is an important feature of diary practise, regardless of time and place, but it has barely been studied yet. This article highlights symbols that designate masturbation in diaries of the mid-17th century until the first half of the 20th century. These symbols are interpreted not as ‘silence,’ but as disguising, narrative strategies. They form an integral part of the text and should be studied as such. The central question is how authors by employing disguising strategies (such as symbols) in diaries position themselves within and against public discourse on masturbation. The main body of sources consists of six diaries from different national contexts. The discourse against masturbation which developed from the beginning of the 18th century was an international (Western) affair. In medical treatises and pedagogical manuals for parents, masturbation became a ‘total illness’: a life-threatening activity that would lead to near-certain (and gruesome) death. Diary writing functioned as a medium to register and control this secret vice but the diaries also show ways to change or resist the dominant discourse. The symbols for masturbation re ect some crucial aspects of diary writing: the diary as a memory device and a medium of registry and control of bodily processes, in which private experience is connected to public discourse.

AB - Symbols, encryptions and codes are a way to hide sensitive or highly personal content in diaries. This kind of private language is an important feature of diary practise, regardless of time and place, but it has barely been studied yet. This article highlights symbols that designate masturbation in diaries of the mid-17th century until the first half of the 20th century. These symbols are interpreted not as ‘silence,’ but as disguising, narrative strategies. They form an integral part of the text and should be studied as such. The central question is how authors by employing disguising strategies (such as symbols) in diaries position themselves within and against public discourse on masturbation. The main body of sources consists of six diaries from different national contexts. The discourse against masturbation which developed from the beginning of the 18th century was an international (Western) affair. In medical treatises and pedagogical manuals for parents, masturbation became a ‘total illness’: a life-threatening activity that would lead to near-certain (and gruesome) death. Diary writing functioned as a medium to register and control this secret vice but the diaries also show ways to change or resist the dominant discourse. The symbols for masturbation re ect some crucial aspects of diary writing: the diary as a memory device and a medium of registry and control of bodily processes, in which private experience is connected to public discourse.

U2 - 10.5463/ejlw.6.209

DO - 10.5463/ejlw.6.209

M3 - Article

VL - 6

SP - 101

EP - 134

JO - European Journal of Life Writing

JF - European Journal of Life Writing

SN - 1876-8156

ER -

ID: 44268925