The Fatal Hero explores the genesis of a dynamic new female hero in English literature. With imaginative and forceful arguments, it investigates the radical revision of the figure of Diana as an ideal model for the heroic woman. This ground-breaking analysis opens new vistas on the novels of Charlotte Brontë, Nathaniel Hawthorne, James Joyce, Henry James, George Eliot, and Edith Wharton. This study transforms the way we see modern literature, its language and images, and its themes and heroic characters. The Fatal Hero demonstrates a hitherto unidentified but profound nexus between women's studies and modern literature.