Daughters of the House: Modes of the Gothic in Victorian Fiction

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The angel of the house is a critical commonplace in studies of the 19th-century woman. Through readings of Victorian gothic and sensation fiction, this book interrogates current feminist assumptions about the relation of women to the private sphere, and reveals the unexpectedly radical potential of this association. It is argued that this potential is an intrinsic aspect of the female gothic tradition traceable back to Ann Radcliffe. A new typology of male and female gothic is shown to be relevant to contemporary French feminist debates about sexual difference.