Date of Award


Document Type

Campus Access Thesis


English Language and Literatures



First Advisor

Catherine Keyser


This paper examines the work of Jane Bowles, especially her novel Two Serious Ladies and long short story 'Camp Cataract,' as she demonstrates models of relationality. Using affect theory, this paper explores the way that Bowles's work may offer theories of relationality, in which the self and other function via processes of reading and inscription. These models work as criticisms or investigations of relational practices; however, more interestingly, the formal elements of Bowles's work, her poetic, aesthetic, and metafictional choices, demonstrate a relationship between reader and text that likewise operates along inscriptive and hermeneutic practices. This suggests not a fatalistic or stabilized portrait of relationality, but one in which there is room for change and adaptation--potentially changes that might have significant effects on the way that we consider identity.