Sleeping Beauty and the Sadeian Gothic
in Decadent Daughters and Monstrous Mothers
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This chapter is concerned with bodying forth, or awakening, the spectral presence of the Gothic in The Sadeian Woman to realign its political and aesthetic matters. A dormant subject on the brink of womanhood, Sleeping Beauty is an exemplary Gothic daughter, whose body is subject to the disciplinary practices fictionalised by the Gothic castle as a locus of paternal power. Angela Carter confronts the deadly boundaries of the Sadeian body/corpus in The Sadeian Woman. However, Sadeian inflections of 'Sleeping Beauty' reappear through her fiction, most strikingly in The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman and The Bloody Chamber. Confronting the thorny hedges of the father's house, Carter unmasks the operations of the 'prick' that repeatedly put women to sleep in the Sadeian Gothic. Finally, the chapter explores the Gothic as a site for the intersection of Sadeian and feminist discourses of female victimisation.

Decadent Daughters and Monstrous Mothers

Angela Carter and European Gothic


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