Submission Date


Document Type



Modern Languages (French)


Céline Brossillon

Committee Member

Andrew Jones

Committee Member

Meredith Goldsmith

Department Chair

Matthew Mizenko

External Reviewer

Maria Beliaeva Solomon

Distinguished Honors

This project meets the requirements for Distinguished Honors in the Modern Languages Department.

Project Description

George Sand and Rachilde, two important French female writers of the 19th c, discuss androgynous characters and borderline homosexual relationships in their works. They are part of a larger literary trend obsessed with liminal characters who are neither masculine nor feminine, or maybe both? This project studies the ambiguity of gender in Francophone literature in the 19th c, specifically in George Sand’s Gabriel (1839) and Rachilde’s Madame Adonis (1888). Through a close study of two characters - Gabriel(le) and Marcel(le) -, we will discuss sex, gender and sexuality, and explore the ways in which the protagonists maneuver gender boundaries in a binary society. A look into the personal lives of both George Sand and Rachilde, who were themselves cross-dressers and gender benders, will allow us to see how they influenced their own characters and their thought process.