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Elisabeth Bronfen

femininity. As Hélène Cixous notes, death is always at work in the construction of this conflict-ridden opposition, ‘for meaning only gets constituted in a movement in which one of the terms of the couple is destroyed in favour of the other’. 1 At the same time, the fear of death translates into a fear of Woman, who, for man, is death. She is constructed as the place of mystery

in Over her dead body
Women in the public asylums, 1860s-1900s
Catharine Coleborne

patient case records. It uses gender as a category of analysis to explore the function and representation of ethnicity, at the same time finding out more about constructions and expectations of femininity for nineteenth-century women inmates and those around them, through both quantitative and qualitative evidence. Read together, these two chapters show gender in relationship and tease out some of the

in Insanity, identity and empire
Catherine Deneuve and 1970s political culture
Bridget Birchall

established cinematic femininity, but whose symbolic function lay primarily in the realm of the national. As the twin poles of mature heritage performance in the 1980s, Deneuve and Depardieu show interesting differences in the nature of their stardom. On the one hand, his incarnation of literary and historical figures such as Balzac’s Le Colonel Chabert, Pagnol’s Jean de Florette, Rostand’s Cyrano de Bergerac and Auguste Rodin in

in From perversion to purity
Kimberly Lamm

5 Rewriting maternal femininity in Mary Kelly’s Post-Partum Document ‘[L]ittle girls are told their future is caring for people … ’ Sheila Rowbotham in Nightcleaners (1975)1 Post-Partum Document is an archive of objects that represent the pleasures Kelly’s maternal figure takes in caring for her child: infant clothing; soiled nappies; scribbled drawings; words, dialogues, and stories; letters and typesetting materials; pieces of blankets; and small gifts the child found in nature. These objects are marked by imminent losses, however, making the mother

in Addressing the other woman
Lisa Downing

nouvelle vague reference: the murder-suicide of Catherine (Jeanne Moreau) in Truffaut’s Jules et Jim (1962). Critics have argued that Jules et Jim works to establish Catherine as a fetishized object of desire and as a representational archetype of femininity by numerous means. The most striking of these strategies is the préfiguration of the eponymous heroes’ meeting with Catherine in their discovery of a statue of a woman

in Patrice Leconte
Mary A. Procida

Indian women was complex, however, coloured by expectations about femininity and women’s role in the empire. Despite their deprecations of Indian women’s lives, Anglo-Indian women were, nonetheless often envious of certain aspects of their lives. In the masculine world of the Raj, Anglo-Indian women could feel superior to their Indian counterparts in their greater athleticism

in Married to the empire
Claire Nally

Whilst the focus of much criticism has addressed goth as a subculture, considerably less attention has been given to the gendered status of marketing and advertising in subcultural magazines, whilst ‘glossy’ goth magazines have enjoyed little concerted analysis at all. Subcultures are frequently represented by participants and critics as ‘idyllic’ spaces in which the free play of gender functions as distinct from the ‘mainstream’ culture. However, as Brill (2008), Hodkinson (2002) and Spooner (2004) have identified, this is unfortunately an idealistic critical position. Whilst goth men may embrace an ‘androgynous’ appearance, goth women frequently espouse a look which has much in common with traditional feminine values. Slippages between subcultural marketing and mainstream advertising are frequent and often neotraditional in their message regarding masculinity and femininity. In using critiques of postfeminism alongside subcultural theory, I seek to reevaluate how gender functions in these publications. By close inspection of scene representations of ‘goth’ in the twenty-first-century through magazines such as Gothic Beauty (US), Unscene and Devolution (UK), as well as interviews with participants, I argue women’s goth fashion, sexuality and body image often (but not exclusively) represent a hyperfemininity which draws from conventional ideas of womanhood.

Gothic Studies

This book examines how the identities of women and girls in colonial India were shaped by interaction with each other, a masculine raj and feminist and non-feminist philanthropists situated mostly outside India. These identities were determined by the emotional and sexual needs of men, racial hybridity, mission and religious orders, European accomplishments mentalities, restricted teacher professionalism and far more expansive medical care interaction. This powerful vista is viewed mostly through the imagery of feminine sensibility rather than feminism as the most consistent but changing terrain of self-actualisation and dispute over the long time period of the book. National, international and colonial networks of interaction could build vibrant colonial, female identities, while just as easily creating dystopias of female exploitation and abuse. These networks were different in each period under study in the book, emerging and withering away as the interplay of state imperatives and female domesticity, professionalism and piety changed over time. Based on extensive archival work in many countries, the book provides important context for studies of late nineteenth and early twentieth-century colonial women in many colonial domains. The book also explains why colonial mentalities regarding females in India were so different to those on the nationalist side of the story in the early twentieth-century. This was even when feminist discourse was offered by a failing raj to claim new modernity after World War One and when key women activists in India chose, instead, to cross over to occupy spaces of Indian asceticism and community living.

J.S. Bratton

assertion of masculinity’. 2 The British Empire, however, had some use for girls. In their discussion of the Englishwoman, 3 Jane Mackay and Pat Thome begin with the proposition that nationality…played a more significant role in the redefinition of masculinity as it emerged in the later nineteenth century than in that of femininity’, but add this is not

in Imperialism and juvenile literature
Gothic Continuities, Feminism and Postfeminism in the Neo-Gothic Film
Helen Hanson

The article seeks to explore questions of fictional female victimhood by examining feminist and post-feminist critical engagements with the Gothic heroine figure. The paper traces instances of this figure in literary and filmic versions of the ‘female gothic’ narrative, focusing in particular on the female gothic film cycle of the 1940s, in films such as Rebecca (1940) and Suspicion (1941), and the cycles recurrence in more contemporary female-addressed suspense thrillers, such as Deceived (1991), Sleeping with the Enemy (1991), Shadow of Doubt (1998), and What Lies Beneath (2000). The paper reveals that the neo-gothic heroine condenses key issues pertinent to shifts in feminist and post-feminist critique, such as woman-as-victim, negotiations about the meanings of femininity, and the relationship between women and domestic space.

Gothic Studies