Date of Degree Completion
Master of Arts (MA)
Dr. Jay Ball
Second Committee Member
Dr. Mark Auslander
Third Committee Member
Professor George Bellah
A PATRIOT FOR MEN: THE POLITICS OF MASCULINITY
IN JOHN OSBORNE’S A PATRIOT FOR ME
By applying David Savran’s scholarship on the politics of masculinity to John Osborne’s play A Patriot for Me (1965), I demonstrate that Osborne exemplified contradictory sexual politics in the play, and was criticized as homophobic and praised as revolutionary in similarly contradictory original reviews. I argue that play very much typifies the heteronormative politics of masculinity by placing a dominant homosexual (Redl) as protagonist, and inverts the positions of the period woman and the staged effeminate man. Redl is historically represented as a heroic homosexual, but is actually a heteronormative object. I provide evidence for this interpretation by employing Savran to conduct a close reading of the play A Patriot for Me. I also provide in my Conclusion an analysis of a notebook in the Osborne archives, purported by biographer John Heilpern to be simply notes for A Patriot for Me, but which actually contain many private ruminations on Osborne’s sexual politics that shed light on his thoughts concerning homosexuality.
Kelly, Joshua, "A Patriot for Men: The Politics of Masculinity in John Osborne's "A Patriot for Me"" (2016). All Master's Theses. 360.
Available for download on Tuesday, June 15, 2021