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Jeffrey, W.D. (1994). Penelope's Web. Gender, Modernity, H.D.'S Fiction: By Susan Stanford Friedman. Cambridge/New York: Cambridge University Press, 1990. 451 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 63:387-391.

(1994). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 63:387-391

Penelope's Web. Gender, Modernity, H.D.'S Fiction: By Susan Stanford Friedman. Cambridge/New York: Cambridge University Press, 1990. 451 pp.

Review by:
William D. Jeffrey

Susan Stanford Friedman has written an exemplary book in which she uses her knowledge of psychoanalysis to illuminate the life and writing of H.D.—the nom de plume of Hilda Doolittle. Among psychoanalysts, H.D. is known for her accounts of her analysis with Freud. In literary academia, she is recognized as a twentieth century poet important in the development of modernism. Among feminists, she is renowned as a woman writer, who, in her life and career, dealt with major issues of feminism.

Friedman derives the title of her book from what H.D. said concerning her lifelong autobiographical project: "It must be Penelope's web I'm weaving." Friedman concentrates on H.D.'s prose creations—novels, novellas, short stories, essays, memoirs, and letters—which have not received as much critical appraisal as her poetry.

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