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.
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