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Defying Gravity: Female Creative Writers, Self-Destruction, and Resilience

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Title: Defying Gravity: Female Creative Writers, Self-Destruction, and Resilience
Author: Torgeson, Tessa
Description: This project explores the correlation between female creative writers and self-destruction. Self-destruction encompasses a constellation of disorders such as alcoholism, self-harm, mental illness and eating disorders- all of which interfere with a woman’s ability to function in daily life. History gives us many examples of mentally ill female writers such as Sylvia Plath and Virginia Woolf. There is extensive research on these authors and their struggles with mental illness. Yet, little has been written about healing and recovery. In a Prozac Nation where one in ten people take anti-depressants, it is increasingly important that the traditional view of mental illness evolves beyond a pathological model, towards a more holistic, healing model. As such, my creative non-fiction piece is written in the best form to convey its complex message. It is a fractured Deconstructionist narrative that juggles three different voices. The first layer is a narrative voice, consisting of biographical information, writing, and research about women writers such as Sylvia Plath and Virginia Woolf and self-destruction. Another layer will be my creative non-fiction writing. Lastly, I will use a metaphor comparing self-destruction to stars, using Carl Sagan’s Cosmos as a guide to astronomy.
Date: 2012-11-29
Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/10365/22388

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