Not without My Mommy: The New Woman’s Mother Figure in Irmgard Keun’s Novels Gilgi—eine von uns (1931) and Das kunstseidene Mädchen (1932)

Julia Feldhaus


This study puts forward the theory that the most significant influence on the New Woman’s success and the direction she chooses in life is her relationship with her mother. While scholars typically consider political and socioeconomic factors, and especially the media phenomenon of the era, when setting out to explain the emergence of the New Woman, this essay will demonstrate—via an analysis of Irmgard Keun’s novels Gilgi – eine von uns (1931) and Das kunstseidene Mädchen (1932)—that the New Woman seeks to understand her mother’s position and the decisions she has made in life to better guide her own. (JF)

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