Restless Spirits: Ghost Stories by American Women, 1872-1926

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Catherine A. Lundie
Univ of Massachusetts Press, 1996 - Fiction - 316 pages
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Just as dreams have long been associated with the unconscious, ghost stories have often served as forums for otherwise unapproachable issues. This volume brings together a lively selection of ghost stories by women writers who use the genre to reveal and challenge prevailing cultural discourses on the nature and status of women. Depicting marriage, motherhood, female sexuality, spinsterhood, widowhood, and the intersection of madness and medical practice, the authors displace their critiques of dominant ideologies onto the supernatural, thus shielding themselves from critical recrimination. Their evocative works provide an invaluable resource for insights into women's writing and lives.

Originally published in popular magazines, the twenty-two stories in this collection are set in all corners of the United States and were written by a range of authors known and unknown, including Edith Wharton, Kate Chopin, and Zora Neale Hurston. Whether depicting a servant who helps save the reputation of her master's dead first wife, a ghostly mother who haunts a stranger until he agrees to adopt her orphaned daughter, or a ghost who revisits her beloved husband only to discover his long-standing preference for her sister, these tales possess great psychological richness and offer first-rate entertainment even as they explore the social and psychological realities of women's lives. Each story is preceded by a biographical headnote.

 

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RESTLESS SPIRITS: Ghost Stories by American Women, 1872-1926

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A generous collection of 22 ghostly tales, some by well-known writers, most by long (and sometimes unjustly) forgotten authors. The volume is prefaced by editor Lundie's long and informative ... Read full review

Contents

Introduction I
1
sfr
25
MARY AUSTIN
46
OLIVIA HOWARD DUNBAR
52
ZORA NEALE HURSTON
62
HILDEGARDE HAWTHORNE
68
GEORGIA WOOD PANGBORN
91
CORNELIA A P COMER
99
The Past 1920
154
Secret Chambers 1909
175
Her Letters 1895
192
The Medicalization of the Female
203
HARRIET PRESCOTT SPOFFORD
217
JOSEPHINE DASKAM BACON
235
ClayShuttered Doors 1926
252
Widows and Spinsters
271

KATHARINE HOLLAND BROWN
112
CHARLOTTE PERKINS GILMAN
123
At La Glorieuse 1898
133
A Dissatisfied Soul 1904
284
Mistress Marians Light 1889
300
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About the author (1996)

Catherine A. Lundie is an independent scholar who lives in Lambertville, New Jersey.

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