Graduation Year


Graduation Month


Document Type

Professional Paper - Campus Access Only

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

School or Department

Women's and Gender Studies Certificate



Faculty Mentor

Elizabeth Hubble

Faculty Mentor Department

Women's and Gender Studies Certificate

Subject Categories

Creative Writing | Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies



Martin, Mackenzie, B.A., May 2017 Psychology and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

The Rest Of The Story

Faculty Mentor: Elizabeth Hubble

I have always had a passion for storytelling, so when I first learned about écriture féminine I was hooked. Lécriture féminine was a term coined by Hélène Cixous in her piece titled “The Laugh of Medusa” to describe a different type of women’s writing which works outside the accepted patriarchal structure. This theory encourages women to write in their own manner rejecting the mainstream patriarchal, phallocentric style and structure. Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own has been held up as an example of this free feminine writing. However, Paula Gunn Allen’s “Kochinnenako in Academe: Three Approaches to Interpreting a Keres Indian Tale” provides another perspective. Gunn’s analysis of the ways that traditional American Indian stories have been altered through colonization and imperialism show that the idea of écriture féminine is not new; rather it is the partial rediscovery of a tribal or folk tradition, which has been erased through colonization. While the work of authors such as Virginia Woolf challenge the patriarchal structure through the use of écriture féminine, an adaptation of tribal and folk tradition, this challenge is in tension with ways of knowing that reinforce imperialist ideation. By moving the idea of écriture féminine, as exemplified by Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own, towards a more tribal understanding, as explained by Paula Gunn Allen in “Kochinnenako in Academe: Three Approaches to Interpreting a Keres Indian Tale,” writing and storytelling can be expanded beyond imperialist ideals. Because Allen’s outlook is focused on colonization rather than phallocentrism, more voices can be heard through this tribal way of writing. This practice may be explored as a freer practice not just for people who identify as women, but for people of all identities who wish to write outside of imperialistic ideals.

Honors College Research Project




© Copyright 2017 Mackenzie M. Martin