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Sex, shtetl and Singer

The Institute of Polish Culture of the University of Warsaw invites the general public to the lecture by Dr Aneta Stępień titled “Sex and the Shtetl: Jewish/Yiddish masculinity and sexuality on the basis of Isaac Bashevis Singer’s novel The Manor (1967).”

The lecture will be held on 27 May 2015, at 5.00 p. m., at the Institute’s headquarters at 26/28 Krakowskie Przedmieście Street in Warsaw.

The lecture is an attempt at interpreting male sexuality in the novel The Manor by I. B. Singer as shaped by two factors: Singer’s vision of the Yiddish literature and the existence of the Jewish Diaspora in Europe at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries. It will also be an initiation of a discussion on political dimension of sexuality in Singer’s works and an attempt at identifying the proper methodology of studying and understanding sexual behaviors as well as inter-gender relations in the writer’s works.

The issues concerning methodological challenges connected with intercultural and interdisciplinary character of Singer’s works as well as problems referring to the state of research on Singer’s works will also be elaborated during the post-lecture discussion.


Dr Aneta Stępień is an assistant professor at the Department of Russian and Slavonic Studies of the Trinity College in Dublin where, during the graduate and post-graduate courses, she conducts classes on the Polish culture, comparative literature and European and gender studies. Her most important publications concern the issues of masculinity and shame, the masculinity in the Diaspora and the race issues in relation to a human body. She carries out research on sexuality and gender relations in the works of Isaac Bashevis Singer which are a part of her author’s project “Gender and Sexuality in the works of Isaac Bashevis Singer”.

Source: information materials of the Institute of Polish Culture of the University of Warsaw