This paper seeks to bring further the discussion of how early modern female writers pioneered resilient configurations of subjectivity within a humanist framework. In specific, I focus on works by Hélisenne de Crenne (pseud.) and discuss the complex status of the authorship, especially the novel Angoysses Douloureuses (1538), in the history of subjectivity. While some scholars see in the work a woman’s servile subjection to patriarchy, others discover in it the rise of a rebellious female subject. As Timothy Reiss has suggested in Mirages of the Selfe (2003), the author of the novel incubates a more forward-looking sense of self than male contemporaries, notably Montaigne. What I wish to add focus to within this larger discussion, are the startling complexities of human nature depicted in the work, the strikingly ambiguous attitude towards passions and their importance, and to what extent the subject formation that takes place in and through the work is relational, relying on responsiveness and gendered bearings. Through this approach the overall aim is to contributes to a broader discussion of gender and subjectivity in the renaissance as it revises the understanding of the rise of modern subjectivity.