Race, Gender, and Sexuality Symposium

Document Type

History and Liberation

Publication Date



“Impenetrable Interiority” focuses on Emily Dickinson’s intimate letters to her sister-in-law, Susan Dickinson. There have often been speculations that Dickinson was a spinster-like shut-in whose love life was quite uneventful, and yet on the other hand, there has also been the speculation that Emily was deeply in love with Susan. Out of all of the people Emily wrote to, Susan was the correspondent who received the most. However, the circumstances were not so black and white, and are not easy for biographers to settle on. Her letters leave room for many questions.