Shame and Queer Desire: A Storied Reading Lady Audley's Secret (best of)


  • Nathan Marquam


On "Shame and Queer Desire: A Storied Reading of Lady Audley's Secret": "One of my favorite rhetoricians, Malea Powell, said that 'the only difference between a history, a theory, a poem, and an essay is the one that we have ourselves imposed.' The essay published here, 'Shame and Queer Desire: A Storied Reading of Lady Audley’s Secret,' is my recognition of her words. I went to college for English first because I wanted to be a poet, then because I wanted to be a creative writer, and then I found that even the box of “creative writing” was too small to contain me. My stories, my criticisms, my theories—they run into each other seamlessly. When I approached Mary Elizabeth Braddon’s sensational Victorian novel Lady Audley’s Secret, I approached it as my full self: as a scholar, a queer person with my queer lived experiences, and an aspiring rhetorician. This essay documents the way I read Lady Audley’s Secret, and my refusal to allow my own reading to be rendered inconsequential by anyone else’s."

Author Biography

Nathan Marquam

Nathan Marquam is a writer, an aspiring rhetorician, and a defier of both genre and gender. When he's not working as a consultant at IUPUI's Writing Center, he's likely watching a horror movie or working on his novel.