Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

Sin and a Tiger Skin: The Stickiness of Elinor Glyn’s Three Weeks

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Stacy Gillis



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Taylor & Francis, 2018.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


This article considers how the press announcements about Elinor Glyn’s Three Weeks (1907) and then the reviews of the novel, titillated the reading public. It then considers how sex, pleasure and desire function in the novel, centring on the tiger skin on which the adulterous love affair between Paul Verdayne and the Lady is consummated. I consider how desire and pleasure is located not only within the novel, but also how the tiger-skin is embedded with those desires and pleasures. Drawing on Sara Ahmed’s (2004) work on how emotions and feelings travel, penetrate and stick to particular bodies, I consider the circulation of affect, of affective value, can fix the objects of emotions. If an object such as a book which has received a great deal of advance press regarding its possible censoring, or a tiger-skin on which an adulterous affair is consummated, is associated with a particular discourse repeatedly, then certain affects will stick to this object. In short, how does a tiger-skin come to function as erotic shorthand for sex, pleasure and desire? The tiger-skin in Three Weeks became a marker of all these emotions and affects, circulating in the cultural afterlife of this text in significant ways. Considering how the tiger-skin functions in the novel complicates our understanding of generic codes and readerly expectations, and how desire is messily articulated.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Gillis S

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Women: A Cultural Review

Year: 2018

Volume: 29

Issue: 2

Pages: 216-232

Online publication date: 25/05/2018

Acceptance date: 09/03/2018

Date deposited: 11/05/2018

ISSN (print): 0957-4042

ISSN (electronic): 1470-1367

Publisher: Taylor & Francis


DOI: 10.1080/09574042.2018.1447035


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric