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Splattered InkPostfeminist Gothic Fiction and Gendered Violence$
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Sarah E. Whitney

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780252040467

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252040467.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use.date: 30 July 2021

Up from the Basement

Up from the Basement

Postfeminist Gothic’s Captive Imagination

Chapter:
(p.165) 7 Up from the Basement
Source:
Splattered Ink
Author(s):

Sarah E. Whitney

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5406/illinois/9780252040467.003.0007

This chapter investigates how postfeminist gothic confronts the wounds of female captivity. The accounts of three survivors—Elizabeth Smart, Jaycee Dugard, and Michelle Knight—are explored alongside multiple mass-market novels that have adapted similar premises. Memoir and fiction are blended in this chapter because postfeminist gothic works, while not strictly mimetic, are informed by real-life conditions. Susanna Moore's adaptation of Sylvia Likens's torture in The Big Girls, Jodi Picoult's reimagining of Ellie Nesler's vengeance in Perfect Match, Sapphire's amalgamation of incest-victim testimonies in Push, and Alice Sebold's adaptation of her own rape and beating illustrate how actual events of gendered violence provide context for this particular genre.

Keywords:   female captivity, Elizabeth Smart, Jaycee Dugard, Michelle Knight, memoir, postfeminist gothic works, gendered violence

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