Queering Gender Through Texture: Possession and Decadence in Mário de Sá- Carneiro's A confissão de Lúcio

  • Israel Pechstein University of Wisconsin-Madison
Keywords: Modernism, Portuguese, masculinity, futurity, body


Departing from Renu Bora’s notion of the queerness of textures, this article seeks to understand how locating the queer textures of Mário de Sá-Carneiro’s 1914 novella, A confissão de Lúcio, emphasizes the work’s engagement with questions of gender, modernity, and decadence. Sá-Carneiro’s take on modernity has been described as decadent partly because of his refusal or failure to resolve issues of artistic representation with respect to modernity. Approaching A confissão through the queerness of tactility offers a unique insight into the peculiar relationship between the novella’s narrator-protagonist, Lúcio Vaz, his friend Ricardo de Loureiro, and Ricardo’s wife Marta. Through an exploration of Ricardo’s framing of relationships in terms of gendered possession, this article examines Sá-Carneiro’s ultimately fraught and decadent figuration of modernity.

Author Biography

Israel Pechstein, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Israel Pechstein is a PhD candidate in Portuguese at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where his research focuses on Clarice Lispector’s fiction. More broadly, he is interested in gender, sexuality, and the body in Brazilian, Portuguese, and Luso-African literature.