In the context of the current explosion of interest in Gothic literature and popular culture, this interdisciplinary collection of essays explores for the first time the rich and long-standing relationship between war and the Gothic. Critics have described the global Seven Year’s War as the "crucible" from which the Gothic genre emerged in the eighteenth century. Since then, the Gothic has been a privileged mode for representing violence and extreme emotions and situations. Covering the period from the American Civil War to the War on Terror, this collection examines how the Gothic has provided writers an indispensable toolbox for narrating, critiquing, and representing real and fictional wars. The book also sheds light on the overlap and complicity between Gothic aesthetics and certain aspects of military experience, including the bodily violation and mental dissolution of combat, the dehumanization of "others," psychic numbing, masculinity in crisis, and the subjective experience of trauma and memory. Engaging with popular forms such as young adult literature, gaming, and comic books, as well as literature, film, and visual art, War Gothic provides an important and timely overview of war-themed Gothic art and narrative by respected experts in the field of Gothic Studies. This book makes important contributions to the fields of Gothic Literature, War Literature, Popular Culture, American Studies, and Film, Television & Media.
war gothic in literature and culture
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Offering a variety of critical approaches to late eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Gothic literature, this collection provides a transnational view of the emergence and flowering of the Gothic. The essays expand on now well-known approaches to the Gothic (such as those that concentrate exclusively on race, gender, or nation) by focusing on international issues: religious traditions, social reform, economic and financial pitfalls, manifest destiny and expansion, changing concepts of nationhood, and destabilizing moments of empire-building. By examining a wide array of Gothic texts, including novels, drama, and poetry, the contributors present the Gothic not as a peripheral, marginal genre, but as a central mode of literary exchange in an ever-expanding global context. Thus the traditional conventions of the Gothic, such as those associated with Ann Radcliffe and Monk Lewis, are read alongside unexpected Gothic formulations and lesser-known Gothic authors and texts. These include Mary Rowlandson and Bram Stoker, Frances and Anthony Trollope, Louisa May Alcott, Elizabeth Gaskell, Theodore Dreiser, Rudyard Kipling, and Lafcadio Hearn, as well as the actors Edmund Kean and George Frederick Cooke. Individually and collectively, the essays provide a much-needed perspective that eschews national borders in order to explore the central role that global (and particularly transatlantic) exchange played in the development of the Gothic. British, American, Continental, Caribbean, and Asian Gothic are represented in this collection, which seeks to deepen our understanding of the Gothic as not merely a national but a global aesthetic.
This book examines writing in the Gothic mode which subverts the dominant national narrative of the British home front. Instead of seeing wartime experience as a site of fellowship and emotional resilience, Elizabeth Bowen, Anna Kavan, Mervyn Peake, Roy Fuller and others depict shadowy figures on the margin of the nation.
A Companion to American Gothic features a collection oforiginal essays that explore America’s gothic literarytradition. The largest collection of essays in the field of AmericanGothic Contributions from a wide variety of scholars from around theworld The most complete coverage of theory, major authors,popular culture and non-print media available
Gothic fiction's focus on the irrational and supernatural would seem to conflict with science fiction's rational foundations. However, as this novel collection demonstrates, the two categories often intersect in rich and revealing ways. Analyzing a range of works—including literature, film, graphic novels, and trading card games—from the past three decades through the lens of this hybrid genre, this volume examines their engagement with the era's dramatic changes in communication technology, medical science, and personal and global politics.
The Historical Dictionary of Gothic Literature covers its history through a chronology, an introductory essay, and an extensive bibliography. The dictionary section has over 200 cross-referenced entries on the core texts, central authors, and the recurrent conventions that have distinguished writing in the genre for 250 years. This book is an ideal access point for students, researchers, or anyone interested in the history of Gothic Literature.
As mass media burgeoned in the years between the first and second world wars, so did another phenomenon—celebrity. Beginning in Hollywood with the studio-orchestrated transformation of uncredited actors into brand-name stars, celebrity also spread to writers, whose personal appearances and private lives came to fascinate readers as much as their work. Women, Celebrity, and Literary Culture between the Wars profiles seven American, Canadian, and British women writers—Dorothy Parker, Anita Loos, Mae West, L. M. Montgomery, Margaret Kennedy, Stella Gibbons, and E. M. Delafield—who achieved literary celebrity in the 1920s and 1930s and whose work remains popular even today. Faye Hammill investigates how the fame and commercial success of these writers—as well as their gender—affected the literary reception of their work. She explores how women writers sought to fashion their own celebrity images through various kinds of public performance and how the media appropriated these writers for particular cultural discourses. She also reassesses the relationship between celebrity culture and literary culture, demonstrating how the commercial success of these writers caused literary elites to denigrate their writing as "middlebrow," despite the fact that their work often challenged middle-class ideals of marriage, home, and family and complicated class categories and lines of social discrimination. The first comparative study of North American and British literary celebrity, Women, Celebrity, and Literary Culture between the Wars offers a nuanced appreciation of the middlebrow in relation to modernism and popular culture.
Zombie stories are peculiarly American, as the creature was born in the New World and functions as a reminder of the atrocities of colonialism and slavery. The voodoo-based zombie films of the 1930s and ’40s reveal deep-seated racist attitudes and imperialist paranoia, but the contagious, cannibalistic zombie horde invasion narrative established by George A. Romero has even greater singularity. This book provides a cultural and critical analysis of the cinematic zombie tradition, starting with its origins in Haitian folklore and tracking the development of the subgenre into the twenty-first century. Closely examining such influential works as Victor Halperin’s White Zombie, Jacques Tourneur’s I Walked with a Zombie, Lucio Fulci’s Zombi 2, Dan O’Bannon’s The Return of the Living Dead, Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later, and, of course, Romero’s entire “Dead” series, it establishes the place of zombies in the Gothic tradition. Instructors considering this book for use in a course may request an examination copy here.
The imagination of the early twenty-first century is catastrophic, with Hollywood blockbusters, novels, computer games, popular music, art and even political speeches all depicting a world consumed by vampires, zombies, meteors, aliens from outer space, disease, crazed terrorists and mad scientists. These frequently gothic descriptions of the apocalypse not only commodify fear itself; they articulate and even help produce imperialism. Building on, and often retelling, the British ’imperial gothic’ of the late nineteenth century, the American imperial gothic is obsessed with race, gender, degeneration and invasion, with the destruction of society, the collapse of modernity and the disintegration of capitalism. Drawing on a rich array of texts from a long history of the gothic, this book contends that the doom faced by the world in popular culture is related to the current global instability, renegotiation of worldwide power and the American bid for hegemony that goes back to the beginning of the Republic and which have given shape to the first decade of the millennium. From the frontier gothic of Charles Brockden Brown's Edgar Huntly to the apocalyptic torture porn of Eli Roth's Hostel, the American imperial gothic dramatises the desires and anxieties of empire. Revealing the ways in which images of destruction and social upheaval both query the violence with which the US has asserted itself locally and globally, and feed the longing for stable imperial structures, this book will be of interest to scholars and students of popular culture, cultural and media studies, literary and visual studies and sociology.
Gothic to Multicultural: Idioms of Imagining in American Literary Fiction, twenty-three essays each carefully revised from the past four decades, explores both range and individual register. The collection opens with considerations of gothic as light and dark in Charles Brockden Brown, war and peace in Cooper's The Spy, Antarctica as world-genesis in Poe's The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym, the link of "The Custom House" and main text in Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, reflexive codings in Melville's Moby-Dickand The Confidence-Man, Henry James' Hawthorneas self-mirroring biography, and Stephen Crane's working of his Civil War episode in The Red Badge of Courage. Two composite lineages address apocalypse in African American fiction and landscape in women's authorship from Sarah Orne Jewett to Leslie Marmon Silko. There follow culture and anarchy in Henry James' The Princess Casamassima, text-into-film in Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence, modernist stylings in Fitzgerald, Faulkner and Hemingway, and roman noirin Cornell Woolrich. The collection then turns to the limitations of protest categorization for Richard Wright and Chester Himes, autofiction in J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye, and the novel of ideas in Robert Penn Warren's late fiction. Three closing essays take up multicultural genealogy, Harlem, then the Black South, in African American fiction, and the reclamation of voice in Native American fiction.