The Demi-Sexes and The Androgynes by Jane de La Vaudère / ISBN 9781943813629 / Publisher Snuggly Books & Brian Stableford unearth another forgotten title by this forgotten author / 306-page paperback
Presented here in English for the first time, in a bravura translation by Brian Stableford, are two highly unusual novels from one of the fin-de-siècle’s most eccentric writers.
The Demi-Sexes, originally published in 1897, was the first of Jane de La Vaudère’s novels seriously to explore the territory of the conventionally unmentionable, which it does forthrightly, in its first chapter, when its heroine, Camille, asks a doctor, in secret, for “an operation.”
The Androgynes, first published in 1903, a tale of faithfulness and fickleness amidst the vicious rivalries of the literary and artistic worlds, presents a lush and decadent Paris, replete with cross-dressers, opium smoking, and a provocative miscellany of amour.
Intensely interesting and intriguing, with their zestful mixture of tragic lamentation and ostentatious outrage, The Demi-Sexes and The Androgynes remain captivatingly readable and are sure to be found daring even by today’s standards.