Date of Award

Spring 5-18-2012

Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program




Major Professor

Doll, Daniel and Piano, Doreen

Second Advisor

White, Leslie


The ordering and control of experience through fictive selves, constructed in consideration of an audience of the self and others, is part of the diary’s identity-building and meaning-making function. This thesis analyzes the process by which the diaries of Virginia Woolf, Sylvia Plath, and Janet Schaw construct multiple textual identities and conceptualize their public and private selves. The projection of these multiple selves in the diary text serve to justify the private individual experience as extraordinary and worth telling, as well as to connect with a public community experience, relating the self to a greater socio-cultural context.


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