Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of English

Content Description

1 online resource (ix, 199 pages)

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Charles Shepherdson

Committee Members

Richard Barney, Michael Hill

Subject Categories

English Language and Literature


This dissertation, "A Genealogy of Voice and Gaze in Godwin, Wollstonecraft, and Mary Shelley," presents the unseen and unheard dimension of criminals, madwomen and monsters. During the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, modern man was born while imprisoning his neighbor. For the birth of modern man to take place, therefore, the criminals and the madwomen must be forgotten: the modern institutions of the prison and madhouse are instruments in this forgetting; the voices of these figures must be silenced by the modern discourses of criminology and psychiatry. In a similar way, beside modern man, the monster who is unseeable and unsayable was born and simultaneously banished into darkness and solitude as we see in Shelley's fiction. Although their gaze and voice seemed to be totally repressed, they nonetheless always claim their existence and their right to speak as we see in William Godwin's Caleb Williams, Mary Wollstonecraft's Maria, and Mary Shelley's Frankenstein.