• Svitlana Honsalies-Munis
Keywords: motif, image, language and silence motif, gender, ‘women’s writing’ (‘écriture féminine’), femininity, masculinity, feminine identity, lyrical persona


The article deals with the issues of women’s writing and women’s relationship to language, it studies what motifs and images were employed by contemporary American female poets to express their vision of the language and silence. Special attention is paid to the concept of women’s writing, modern theories of corporeality, sexuality and the problems of the body and the language, which have been considered as major features of women’s poetry in the second half of the 20th century. The theoretical background of the article is based on the works of Hélène Cixous, Luce Irigaray, Julia Kristeva, Jane Gallop, Alicia Ostriker, in which they defined the concepts of women's writing and language, women's subject, bodiness and corporality. The article analyzes a number of related issues: firstly, it determines how well-known theories of women's writing are consistent with the peculiarities of the female experience and its realization in a poetic text, especially on the level of the themes and motifs; secondly, it studies how the motifs of language and silence are expressed in the poetry by Anne Sexton, Sylvia Plath and Adrienne Rich, what are the similarities between their imagery and what are the differences. The article analyses modern feminist works as well as gender studies.


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How to Cite
Honsalies-Munis, S. (2019). THE MOTIFS OF LANGUAGE AND SILENCE IN THE POETRY BY ANNE SEXTON, SYLVIA PLATH AND ADRIENNE RICH. English and American Studies, (16), 143-150. Retrieved from