“Completion of a Circle”: Female Process of Self-Realization and Individuation in Margaret Atwood’s The Robber Bride and “I Dream of Zenia with the Bright Red Teeth”
Keywords:Margaret Atwood, Zenia, individuation, Jung, Shadow Self, femme fatale
In The Robber Bride and its sequel, “I Dream of Zenia with the Bright Red Teeth,” Margaret Atwood underscores the complex feminine identity through the femme fatale, who is depicted using mythic Gothic figures, such as the vampire. Atwood contradicts socially-sanctioned roles for women. She shapes newer and more complete social and personal female identities, questioning how inadequately the patriarchal system represents their multiplicity. The author describes how the protagonists challenge the patriarchal definition of the feminine Self on their Jungian journey towards individuation, for which the fatal woman, as the Shadow Self, acts as a catalyst.
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