The punishment of serving time assigned to male prisoners extends beyond the criminals to their partners. The loved ones of inmates are metaphorically jailed because they too must wait the length of the sentence. The waiting room in which these women visit their men in prison is comparable to the figurative waiting room they also experience. This research debunks traditional connotations of the concepts of freedom and captivity and enlarges their scope of meaning to include both physical and metaphorical implications. Specifically, this study focuses on three primary sources: two memoirs entitled The Prisoner’s Wife by Asha Bandele, and Visiting Life: Women Doing Time on the Outside by Bridget Kinsella, and the BBC television drama Prisoners’ Wives. This project is an analysis of the depictions of prison and internment in these works as well as the discontinuities between nonfictional and fictional genres. Additionally, this comparison spreads to the limitations and advantages of the print and filmic mediums. Through a defamiliarization lens, this work ultimately allows me to coin the term “self-prisonization,” which encases both representational and literal forms of imprisonment and applies to each primary source in a unique and nuanced manner.


Wingard, Leslie




Comparative Literature | English Language and Literature | Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies | Literature in English, North America | Literature in English, North America, Ethnic and Cultural Minority | Other English Language and Literature


The College of Wooster, Senior I.S., Cora Bucher, Prison, Women's perspectives, Captivity, Freedom, Patriarchy, Internal Confinement, Self-prisonization, Imprisonment, Waiting, Love, Defamiliarization, Gender theory, Judith Butler, Visiting Life, The Prisoner's Wife

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



© Copyright 2015 Cora W. Bucher