Reading from Behind
A Cultural Analysis of the Anus
ISBN: 9780889773844
Year: 0
Pages: 288
Binding: Casebound with dust jacket

"Entertaining and informative." Merrill Cole, author of The Other Orpheus: A Poetics of Modern Homosexuality

Since we all have one and use it every day, why is it that people squirm when the anus is mentioned? In Reading from Behind Jonathan Allan explores this question and more in a playful, yet scholarly exploration of everything from porn to poetry.

"Allan's ambitious and controversial research project on anal erotics is a remarkably fresh and original contribution. With Reading from Behind, Allan will emerge as a widely respected critical voice of his generation." David William Foster, Sexual Textualities: Essays on Queer/ing Latin American Writing and Gay and Lesbian Themes in Latin American Writing

"Reorients studies of anality." Todd Reeser, Moderating Masculinity in Early Modern Culture and Masculinities in Theory

Table of Contents



No Wrong Doors: An Entryway—1

Chapter 1 Anal Theory, or Reading from Behind—23

Chapter 2 Orienting Virginity—49

Chapter 3 Topping from the Bottom: Anne Tenino’s Frat Boy and Toppy—63

Chapter 4 Orienting Brokeback Mountain—81

Chapter 5 Spanking Colonialism—111

Chapter 6 Unlocking Delmira Agustini’s “El Intruso”—129

Chapter 7 Shameful Matrophilia in Doña Herlinda y su hijo—147

Chapter 8 Vengeful Vidal—169




Jonathan A. Allan

Jonathan A. Allan is Canada Research Chair in Queer Theory and Assistant Professor of Gender and Women's Studies at Brandon University. He is at work on his second book, Uncut: The Foreskin Archive.
"Dr. Allan shows how describing someone as having an 'anal personality' may signal our need to take the anus."
Devin Pacholik, Vice
"Examines aspects of the human body not normally deemed fit for polite conversation."
Steven Beattie, That Shakespearean Rag
"The most far reaching and surprising conversations about the anus-its pleasures, capacities, mysteries."
Sukhdev Sandhu, The Guardian
No buts about it, Reading From Behind prompts discussion on a taboo topic
Ashley Martin , Regina Leader-Post
The Creative Industries Transition Fund is made possible through funding that was provided to the Saskatchewan Arts Board by the Government of Saskatchewan through the Ministry of Parks, Culture and Sport.