When it was first published in 1928, Djuna Barnes's Ryder, a bawdy mock- Elizabethan chronicle of a family very much like her own, was described in the Saturday Review as 'the most amazing book ever written by a woman.' One of modern literature's first and best denunciations of patriarchal repression, Ryder employs an exuberant prose by which narrator Julie Ryder derides her hated father, polygamous Wendell Ryder. Barnes satirizes masculinity and domesticity by way of parable, poem, and play, and a prose style that echoes Chaucer, Shakespeare, the Bible, and Robert Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy.
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