This introductory study provides a thorough grounding in both the history of Gothic literature and the way in which Gothic texts have been (and can be) critically read.
The book opens with a chronology and an introduction to the principal texts and key critical terms, followed by four chapters: The Gothic Heyday 1760-1820; Gothic 1820-1865; Gothic Proximities 1865-1900; and the Twentieth Century. The discussion examines how the Gothic has developed in different national contexts and in different forms, including novels, novellas, poems, and films. Each chapter concludes with a close reading of a specific text - Frankenstein, Jane Eyre, Dracula and The Silence of the Lambs - to illustrate the ways in which contextual discussion informs critical analysis. The book ends with a conclusion outlining possible future developments within scholarship on the Gothic.
*Provides a single, comprehensive and accessible introduction to Gothic literature
*Offers a coherent account of the historical development of the Gothic in a range of literary and national contexts
*Introduces the ways in which critical theories of class, gender, race and national identity have been applied to Gothic texts
*Includes an outline of essential resources and a guide to further reading