Madelon Sprengnether Headshot
“Memory, like memoir writing, changes ground, even as we seek to fix it in our minds. The past only exists in the present and the present is a kind of Proteus, a shape-shifter who cannot be seized but only momentarily apprehended.”
Madelon Sprengnether
On her book, Great River Road:
Memoir and Memory (2015)

Meet Madelon

Madelon Sprengnether is a poet, memoirist, literary critic, and Regents Professor Emerita of the University of Minnesota. Her recent publications include Great River Road: Memoir and Memory (New Rivers Press, 2015), Near Solstice: Prose Poems (Holy Cow! Press, 2015), and Mourning Freud (Bloomsbury 2018).  

She is the author of three memoirs, Great River Road, Crying at the Movies, and Rivers, Stories, Houses, Dreams, and three collections of poetry, Near Solstice: Prose PoemsThe Angel of Duluth, and The Normal Heart.

She is also a feminist psychoanalytic critic whose collections of criticism, The (M)other Tongue: Essays in Feminist Psychoanalytic Interpretation, and Shakespearean Tragedy and Gender, have had a major impact in their fields. Her book The Spectral Mother: Freud, Feminism, and Psychoanalysis was the first to probe Freud’s phobic responses to the figure of the mother in his life and theory.

She is a graduate of the New Directions: Writing with a Psychoanalytic Edge Program in Washington, D.C. and is a member of numerous regional and national organizations including the Minnesota Psychoanalytic Society and Institute, the American Psychoanalytic Association, the American Association of Psychoanalysis in Clinical Social Work, and Division 39 of the American Psychological Association.