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The New Angels in the House? Feminists as New Victorians


Whelehan, IM, The New Angels in the House? Feminists as New Victorians, L I T: Literature Interpretation Theory, 20, (1-2) pp. 65-78. ISSN 1043-6928 (2009) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2009 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC

DOI: doi:10.1080/10436920802690414


This essay takes as its point of departure the American writer Rene Denfeldís book The New Victorians (1995). At the time of its publication it was hailed by Right-leaning critics as a common-sense corrective to the lunacy of feminismís "extremist" fringe, regarded as creeping dangerously into the mainstream. Denham is not read widely in academic circles and, as a journalist and non-fiction writer, has since turned her attention to other subjects, but her book is representative of a cluster of trade publications which appeared in the mid to late 1990s and has a significance which continues to be felt in popular reactions to feminism. I have chosen to focus most specifically on Denfeld because she most clearly articulates a link between academic feminism and the Victorians, suggesting that contemporary political feminists seek to anchor women in a past of repression and self-denial; however, I shall also make brief reference to other popular feminist detractors, such as Katie Roiphe and Christina Hoff Sommers, with whom Denfeld shares ideological and thematic concerns.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Language, Communication and Culture
Research Group:Literary studies
Research Field:North American literature
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Communication
Objective Field:Communication not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Whelehan, IM (Professor Imelda Whelehan)
ID Code:70550
Year Published:2009
Web of Science® Times Cited:3
Deposited By:Research Division
Deposited On:2011-06-28
Last Modified:2013-07-15

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