Gothic Stories Within Stories: Frame Narratives and Realism in the Genre, 1790-1900
Frame narratives--stories within stories--are featured in nearly every canonical Gothic novel. Sometimes dismissed as a shopworn convention of the genre, frame narratives in fact function as a dynamic basis for imaginative variation and are vital to evaluating the diverse Gothic tradition. The juxtaposition between the everyday "frame world" of the story and the disturbing embedded narrative allows the monstrous to escape textual confines, forcing the reader to experience the reassurance of the ordinary alongside the horror of the uncanny.
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appears argues Arthur becomes Bleak House blurring boundaries Brontë Cambridge Carlyle Carlyle’s Castle of Otranto central narrative characters Confessions creature creature’s Critical dark death Dickens Dickens’s diegetic disturbing Dracula Editor embedded Emily’s escape Esther’s extradiegetic Fiction figure found manuscript frame narrative Frankenstein Gaston de Blondeville Gothic frame Gothic novels Harker Heathcliff Helen horror human Humphrey Humphrey’s Hyde’s Ibid Italian Jarndyce Jekyll and Hyde Jekyll’s Kant Kant’s Lacan letter London Mary Shelley Mathilda Maturin Melmoth Memoirs metaphor monster monstrous Mysteries of Udolpho narrative frames narrator observes Old Curiosity Old Curiosity Shop omniscient opening frame Oxford University Press painted veil poem preface previous Gothic Quilp Radcliffe Radcliffe’s readers Real realism Review Sartor Resartus scene Shelley’s Sicilian Romance Slavoj Žižek story structure suggests supernatural symbolic order symbolic reality tale terminal frame Teufelsdröckh third-person Utterson vampiric Victorian Walpole Walpole’s Walton’s Wildfell Hall Willoughton Wringhim’s Wuthering Heights York Žižek writes