The Key(Word) to the Madwoman's Attic

  • The Key(Word) to the Madwoman's Attic


    In 1979 Sandra M. Gilbert and Susan Gubar published their seminal piece of feminist literary criticism: The MadWoman in the Attic. Through application of close reading, historicization, and critical theory, Gilbert and Gubar constructed an argument that insisted the works of 19th century women writers could be understood as veiled projections of the authors’ own “quest for self-identification” (76). “Locked into structures created by and for men,” trapped women writers had to learn how to navigate an inherently hostile terrain, all the while never losing sight of “the fact that they needed to communicate truths which other (i.e. male) writers apparently never expressed or felt” (Gilbert and Gubar 74-75). However,…