This chapter re/evaluates the importance of close reading while openly foregrounding gender as a critical concept. It sets out to show that far from being neutral as conventionally assumed, or alien to feminism because of its connections with so-called formalist approaches, close reading as a method of interpretation remains a useful tool for feminist analysis. After a brief look at the history of the method, this chapter moves on to investigate how the traditional strategies of close reading become modifi ed, invigorated and renewed when adapted to the needs of feminist and gender studies methodological claims. We will illustrate our points with a critical insight of the ways in which a feminist favourite, Charlotte Brontë’s novel Jane Eyre (1847), has been closely read by feminist scholars from a number of different critical positions.1