Many foundational gothic novels are available electronically through this project as they are in the public domain, meaning no exclusive intellectual property rights are held by the author or corporate entity.
A spellbinding novel that transforms history into a story as powerful as Exodus and as intimate as a lullaby. Sethe was born a slave and escaped to Ohio, but eighteen years later she is still not free. Sethe has too many memories of Sweet Home, the beautiful farm where so many hideous things happened. And Sethe's new home is haunted by the ghost of her baby, who died nameless and whose tombstone is engraved with a single word: Beloved.
Cover image from Simon & Schuster edition. RCL copy is published by Oxford University Press.
The Castle of Otranto, by Horace Walpole, is generally viewed as the first Gothic novel. Its first edition, published in 1764, claimed to be a translation of a work printed in Naples in 1529 and newly discovered in the library of ‘an ancient Catholic family in the north of England’. It tells the story of Manfred, the prince of Otranto, who is keen to secure the castle for his descendants in the face of a mysterious curse. The novel begins with the death of Manfred’s son, Conrad, who is crushed to death by an enormous helmet on the morning of his wedding to the beautiful princess Isabella. Faced with the extinction of his line, Manfred vows to divorce his wife and marry the terrified Isabella himself. The Castle of Otranto blends elements of realist fiction with the supernatural and fantastical, laying down many of the plot devices and character-types that would become typical of the Gothic: secret passages, clanging trapdoors, hidden identities and vulnerable heroines fleeing from men with evil intent. The novel was a success all over Europe, and the poet Thomas Gray commented in a letter to Walpole that it made ‘some of us cry a little, and all in general afraid to go to bed o’nights.’ - The British Library
A fascinating journey into the dark heart of the American gothic that analyzes its connections to race and racism in 21st-century America Haunted houses, bitter revenants and muffled heartbeats under floorboards-the American gothic is a macabre tale based on a true story. Part memoir and part cultural critique, Darkly explores American culture's inevitable gothicity in the traces left from chattel slavery. The persistence of white supremacy and the ubiquity of Black death feeds a national culture of terror and a perpetual undercurrent of mourning. If the gothic narrative is metabolized fear, if the goth aesthetic is
A timeless, terrifying tale of one man's obsession to create life--and the monster that became his legacy. A timeless, terrifying tale of one man's obsession to create life--and the monster that became his legacy.
Romantic gothic fiction is not exciting. Gothic novels are not ghost stories. Gothic novels are not women's writing. Opening with these three theses, The Gothic Text undertakes a fresh approach to a much-studied mode. Marshall Brown combines the teleological approach to literary history developed in his Preromanticism with a European perspective on the one truly international literary form of its era. New insights into literary history and the history of ideas provide a framework for innovative close readings--of Horace Walpole's The Castle of Otranto, Ann Radcliffe's The Italian, and Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, among others--that approach classics of the genre from unusual angles. The book also provides a thoroughly researched account of German romantic psychology as it developed out of Kant's idealist philosophy into a gothic sensibility. Accessibly written and argued in careful, lively detail, The Gothic Text gives many new impulses to the study of romanticism, nineteenth-century fiction, and the origins of psychoanalysis.
Written in his distinctively dazzling manner, Oscar Wilde's story of a fashionable young man who sells his soul for eternal youth and beauty is the author's most popular work. The tale of Dorian Gray's moral disintegration caused a scandal when it ﬁrst appeared in 1890, but though Wilde was attacked for the novel's corrupting inﬂuence, he responded that there is, in fact, "a terrible moral in Dorian Gray." Just a few years later, the book and the aesthetic/moral dilemma it presented became issues in the trials occasioned by Wilde's homosexual liaisons, which resulted in his imprisonment.
George Haggerty examines the ways in which gothic fiction centers on loss as the foreclosure of homoerotic possibility and the relationship between transgressive sexual behaviors and a range of religious behaviors understood as 'Catholic'.
OCLC : (OCoLC)ocm14398278
Publication date: 1847
Cover photo taken from Macmillan Publishers.
When young orphan Heathcliff is adopted by a wealthy gentleman, he quickly forms a close bond with his benefactor’s daughter, Cathy. But over the years, their childhood friendship morphs into a desperate, twisted, possessive love, as they wrestle with the violent and tyrannical rule of Cathy’s brother and the confines of social class that keep them apart. What follows is an ingenious and darkly captivating narrative of frustrated passion and tortured heartbreak reverberating through the generations, wrought with all the brutality, power, and wildness of the Yorkshire moors. With striking force, Emily Brontë’s mesmerizing prose claws at the nature of human folly, defying the gender, religious, and social mores of its day. Wuthering Heights is a transcendent, mystifying masterpiece that examines the cruelty of love, and the ways in which the past, scratching at a windowpane with ghostly fingers, never lets us go. - Penguin Random House
This Companion surveys the traditions and conventions of the dark side of American culture - its repressed memories, its anxieties and panics, its fears and horrors, its obsessions and paranoias. Featuring new critical essays by established and emerging academics from a range of national backgrounds, this collection offers new discussions and analyses of canonical and lesser-known literary and other works. Its scope ranges from the earliest manifestations of American Gothic traditions in frontier narratives and colonial myths, to its recent responses to contemporary global events. Moving from analyses of eighteenth-century literature to twenty-first century video games, and touching upon visual art, film, and television, serial killers, monsters, education and cityscapes, this Companion aims to demonstrate the centrality of the gothic to American culture writ large through four key sections: Gothic Histories, Gothic Identities; Gothic Genres, Gothic Sites; Gothic Media; and American Creatures.
First serialized in the journal "The Dark Blue" and published shortly thereafter in the short story collection In a Glass Darkly, Le Fanu's 1872 vampire tale is in many ways the overlooked older sister of Bram Stoker's more acclaimed Dracula. A thrilling gothic tale, Carmilla tells the story of a young woman lured by the charms of a female vampire. This edition includes a student-oriented introduction, tracing the major critical responses to Carmilla, and four interdisciplinary essays by leading scholars who analyze the story from a variety of theoretical perspectives. Ranging from politics to gender, Gothicism to feminism, and nineteenth-century aestheticism to contemporary film studies, these critical yet accessible articles model the diverse ways that scholars can approach a single text. With a glossary, biography, bibliography, and explanatory notes on the text, this edition is ideal for students of Irish and British nineteenth-century literature.
This volume and its companion gather a wide range of readings and sources to enable us to see and understand what monsters show us about what it means to be human. The selection of readings in Classic Readings on Monster Theory is intended to provide interpretive tools and strategies to use to grapple with the primary sources. Taken together, these volumes allow us to witness the consistent, multi-millennium strategies the West has articulated, weaponized, and deployed to exclude, disempower, and dehumanize a range of groups and individuals within and without its porous boundaries.
A junior solicitor travels to Transylvania to meet with an important client, the mysterious Count Dracula. Ignoring the dire warnings of local townsfolk, he allows himself to be seduced by the count's courtly manners and erudite charm. Too late, the solicitor realizes that he is a prisoner of Castle Dracula, his guards a trio of voluptuous young women with sharp white teeth and a taste for blood. Soon thereafter, the solicitor's fiancée, Mina, visits a friend on the English coast. The town is full of speculation over a Russian ship run aground nearby, its crew missing, the dead body of its captain, crucifix in hand, lashed to the wheel. A giant dog was seen leaping from the deck before disappearing into the countryside. The ship's cargo: fifty boxes of Transylvanian dirt. As the beautiful Mina will soon learn, Count Dracula has arrived. At once a Gothic reflection of the Victorian era and a timeless tale of sinister lust, Bram Stoker's Dracula has inspired countless adaptations--none with the same power to quicken the pulse as the original.
In a fascinating study of what, during the last decade, rekindled an avid readership, Judith Wilt proposes a new theory of Gothic fiction that challenges its reputation as merely a formula to be outgrown or a stock of images for the creation of terror. Emphasizing instead its status as an enduring component of the imagination, she establishes the Gothic as the mothering" form for three other popular genres--detective, historical, and science fiction. Originally published in 1980. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.
The book opens with a Chronology and an Introduction to the principal texts and key critical terms, followed by five chapters: The Gothic Heyday 1760-1820; Gothic 1820-1865; Gothic Proximities 1865-1900; Twentieth Century; and Contemporary Gothic. The discussion examines how the Gothic has developed in different national contexts and in different forms, including novels, novellas, poems, films, radio and television. Each chapter concludes with a close reading of a specific text - Frankenstein, Jane Eyre, Dracula, The Silence of the Lambs and The Historian - to illustrate ways in which contextual discussion informs critical analysis.
Almost 170 years on, Charlotte Brontë's story of the trailblazing Jane is as inspiring as ever. This bold and dynamic production uncovers one woman's fight for freedom and fulfilment on her own terms.From her beginnings as a destitute orphan, Jane Eyre's spirited heroine faces life's obstacles head-on, surviving poverty, injustice and the discovery of bitter betrayal before taking the ultimate decision to follow her heart.
Ardel Haefele-Thomas examines a number of nineteenth- and twentieth-century Gothic novels, short stories, and films through the lens of queer cultural studies. In some of these works, as Haefele-Thomas demonstrates, the author or filmmaker fully intended to explore the complicated landscape of queer sexuality and gender identity. In most, however, the author or filmmaker's intentions are unclear. Haefele-Thomas takes on these works, first employing "queer" in its nineteenth-century historical context, to point to their generally weird, odd, or ill components. She then explores them using "queer" in the complex and politically charged context from the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Haefele-Thomas argues that part of what makes these texts Gothic are their covert queer content. She also reveals that queer theory--lacking the gender specificity found in gay and lesbian theories and historiographies--allows room to convey gender, sexuality, race, class, and familial structures in a specific state of anti-categorization.
Available for borrowing from The Open Library, with an Internet Archive account.
As its title suggests, a powerful strain of mysticism runs through this story of personal awakening in a black North Carolina family, but first-time novelist Kenan has a rare gift for naturalism as well, capturing the texture of farm life with vivid detail. The novel follows Horace Cross, a brilliant, tormented teenager who is his family's greatest hope, through a night when demons--perhaps literal, perhaps imagined--force him to confront his bleakest thoughts. Revolted by his homosexuality, flummoxed by his nonconformity and resentful of his family's closed-mindedness, Horace careens toward disaster, while in scenes that leap through time, we meet the other generations of the Cross family. Kenan shapes his novel as a series of struggles for understanding and enlightenment, contrasting Horace's strife with an older cousin's efforts to understand him. Although shifts in time and tone are often jarring and sometimes gratuitous, the strength and richness of Kenan's best passages sweep any objections aside.
A re-assessment of the Gothic in relation to the female, the 'feminine', feminism and post-feminism This collection of newly commissioned essays brings together major scholars in the field of Gothic studies in order to re-think the topic of 'Women and the Gothic'. The contributors explore Gothic works - from established classics to recent films and novels - from feminist and post-feminist perspectives. The result is a lively book that combines rigorous close readings with elegant use of theory in order to question some ingrained assumptions about women, the Gothic and identity.
Since its publication in 1962, Carlos Fuentes' novel, 'Aura', remains not merely an object of academic interest but a continuous source of controversy in Mexico. It was the explosive combination of sex and religion that incensed the Ministro de Hacienda, Salvador Abascal, and linked 'Aura' to the recent polemical Mexican film 'El crimen del Padre Amaro'. 'Aura' is preoccupied with the place and persistence of the sacred in modern Mexico rather than simply the secret abuses of institutional Catholicism. This critical edition of the work is accompanied by an introduction and notes on the text.
In her masterpiece, The Bloody Chamber--which includes the story that is the basis of Neil Jordan's 1984 movie The Company of Wolves--she spins subversively dark and sensual versions of familiar fairy tales and legends like "Little Red Riding Hood," "Bluebeard," "Puss in Boots," and "Beauty and the Beast," giving them exhilarating new life in a style steeped in the romantic trappings of the gothic tradition. For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
In this examination of the monster as cultural object, Judith Halberstam offers a rereading of the monstrous that revises our view of the Gothic. Moving from the nineteenth century and the works of Shelley, Stevenson, Stoker, and Wilde to contemporary horror film exemplified by such movies as Silence of the Lambs, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and Candyman, Skin Shows understands the Gothic as a versatile technology, a means of producing monsters that is constantly being rewritten by historically and culturally conditioned fears generated by a shared sense of otherness and difference. Deploying feminist and queer approaches to the monstrous body, Halberstam views the Gothic as a broad-based cultural phenomenon that supports and sustains the economic, social, and sexual hierarchies of the time. She resists familiar psychoanalytic critiques and cautions against any interpretive attempt to reduce the affective power of the monstrous to a single factor. The nineteenth-century monster is shown, for example, as configuring otherness as an amalgam of race, class, gender, and sexuality. Invoking Foucault, Halberstam describes the history of monsters in terms of its shifting relation to the body and its representations. As a result, her readings of familiar texts are radically new. She locates psychoanalysis itself within the gothic tradition and sees sexuality as a beast created in nineteenth century literature. Excessive interpretability, Halberstam argues, whether in film, literature, or in the culture at large, is the actual hallmark of monstrosity.
Presents one of the few book-length surveys of the genre available today, in a diverse collection of representative texts from a group of international critics. In addition to exemplary novels from established writers, such as Edora Welty, Flannery O'Conner, Carson McCullers, and Cormac McCarthy, works explored here include poetry, a play, and a fairy tale novella. This volume, part of the Critical Insights series, offers a collection of original essays that will establish for students and their teachers an exemplary representation of the genre Southern Gothic as a field of study within American literature. This volume seeks to extend the scope and diversity of literature that constitutes the genre, drawing upon representative themes, grounded in the diverse, often troubled history of the South, while introducing new perspectives and twists to the form, such as in the work of zombie literature as a generative trope. The introduction of poetry, in readings on Allen Tate, James Dickey, and Donald Justice, among others, into what has been a genre defined by fiction represents the originality of the volume. This collection will also consider the geographical significance of the genre within the broader field Southern literature. Defining genres remains a complex task, and these chapters will provide for readers the constitutive terms to locate, both geographically and metaphorically, the Southern Gothic.
Surpassing scholarly discourse surrounding the emergent secularism of the 19th century, Theology, Horror and Fiction argues that the Victorian Gothic is a genre fascinated with the immaterial. Through close readings of popular Gothic novels across the 19th century - Frankenstein, Wuthering Heights, Dracula and The Picture of Dorian Gray, among others - Jonathan Greenaway demonstrates that to understand and read Gothic novels is to be drawn into the discourses of theology. Despite the differences in time, place and context that informed the writers of these stories, the Gothic novel is irreducibly fascinated with religious and theological ideas, and this angle has been often overlooked in broader scholarly investigations into the intersections between literature and religion. Combining historical theological awareness with interventions into contemporary theology, particularly around imaginative apologetics and theology and the arts, Jonathan Greenaway offers the beginnings of a modern theology of the Gothic.
There's something strange about the Silver family house in the closed-off town of Dover, England. Grand and cavernous with hidden passages and buried secrets, it's been home to four generations of Silver women--Anna, Jennifer, Lily, and now Miranda, who has lived in the house with her twin brother, Eliot, ever since their father converted it to a bed-and-breakfast. The Silver women have always had a strong connection, a pull over one another that reaches across time and space, and when Lily, Miranda's mother, passes away suddenly while on a trip abroad, Miranda begins suffering strange ailments. An eating disorder starves her. She begins hearing voices. When she brings a friend home, Dover's hostility toward outsiders physically manifests within the four walls of the Silver house, and the lives of everyone inside are irrevocably changed. At once an unforgettable mystery and a meditation on race, nationality, and family legacies, White is for Witching is a boldly original, terrifying, and elegant novel by a prodigious talent.
With Wide Sargasso Sea, Rhys' last and best-selling novel, she ingeniously brings into light one of fiction's most fascinating characters: the madwoman in the attic from Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre. This mesmerizing work introduces us to Antoinette Cosway, a sensual and protected young woman who is sold into marriage to the prideful Mr. Rochester. Rhys portrays Cosway amidst a society so driven by hatred, so skewed in its sexual relations, that it can literally drive a woman out of her mind. A new introduction by the award-winning Edwidge Danticat, author most recently of Claire of the Sea Light, expresses the enduring importance of this work. Drawing on her own Caribbean background, she illuminates the setting's impact on Rhys and her astonishing work.