Gothic fiction emerged in the late eighteenth century and it was an extension of Romanticism. The principal characteristic of Gothic is the account of terrifying situations with elements like the sublime, madness, mystery, death, supernatural and horror. But as all the literary genres it underwent a transition. In the nineteenth century, the coming of Queen Victoria to the throne, the introduction of new scientific theories, the publication of The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin and industrialization modified the structures of society , its motivation, and believes. This influenced the genre, creating a new literary movement: Victorian Gothic, and therefore also the novels written in these different periods.
Powerful emotions are often an element of gothic literature as it was a genre that took Romanticism to excessive extents. While Austen used this gothic element to satirize the gothic novel, Shelley used it to display a deeper point about the evils of ambition. Both authors exhibited characters severe emotions to show the importance of rationality instead of extremes, but ultimately had a different purpose in presenting this view.
This is coupled with the convention of transgressive, encroaching insanity, ubiquitous in Gothic literature. In The Tell-Tale Heart, a kind of psychological doubling is achieved by the narrator- an identification with the old man at the time of disturbing him in the middle of the night, and a psychopathic detachment, evidenced by the feeling of triumph and elation that precedes the murder in the extract “..so strange a noise as this excited me to uncontrollable terror”. Hysteria is pertinent in Gothic texts, an... ... middle of paper ... ...matic Gothic convention of decay. With respect to the Gothic conventions present in The Raven, The Black Cat, and The Tell-Tale Heart, Edgar Allan Poe’s texts are considered examples of Gothic literature. Through the use of literary techniques and devices, Poe has effectively conveyed thematic concerns of Gothicism.
Romanticism as a whole emphasized the individual, the irrational, the imaginative, the spontaneous, the emotional, and the transcendental. Shelley herself defines "gothic" as a story "which would speak to the mysterious fears of our Nature, and would awaken thrilling horror--one to make the reader dread to look around, to curdle the blood and quicken the beatings of the heart." By infusing moral and social concerns into the gothic style, Shelley achieves more than a simple horror story, however. The universal societal and psychoanalytical questions raised in Frankenstein secure its place in world literature and promise decades of similarly fashioned gothic writings. As stated above, the gothic genre developed as a harsh reaction to the predominant Neoclassic ideals of the time; the emphasis shifted from the whole to the solitary, and from society to nature.
It is in this respect that Emily Bronte’s literary bent of mind is highly influenced by Byron’s writings. Lord Byron’s “The Giaour” and Charlotte Bronte’s portrayal of Bertha in Jane Eyre Many other analogies exist for fulfilling the task of giving a view of the Bronte sisters’ astute appropriation of Byron’s use of the Gothic in the literary creation .Such is the analogy existing between Lord Byron’s and Charlotte Bronte ‘s texts. Like Emily Bronte, Charlotte Bronte -the eldest of the three Bronte sisters- had also been exposed to Lord Byron’s poetry. In this very part of the paper, I would first place a special focus on Byron’s use of the Gothic in “The Giaour” (1813), which could have certainly affected Charlotte Bronte’s portrayal of Bertha in Jane Eyre. What are the Gothic elements that had been deployed by Byron in his literary production of “The Giaour”?
Mary Shelley’s outstanding novel Frankenstein is a prime example of a Gothic novel because of the many characteristics of a Gothic novel that point it to being a Gothic work. The Gothic genre, or otherwise known as a Gothic romance, was a popular form of literature during the time that Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein. Mary Shelley used the Gothic genre of Romantic literature in the writing of the novel Frankenstein. She a may have even been influenced by the Gothic structure, Castle Frankenstein, to write the Gothic novel Frankenstein (Williams 3). Gothic novels were a type of fiction that became popular in England during the 1700’s and early 1800’s (Dunn 279).
This tendency indicate... ... middle of paper ... ...ht begin to situate the work that we as critics do in relation to the imaginative histories that inform our critical readings. “Gothic Archives” engages some important bodies of critical writing which take as their subject the theoretical possibilities of the Gothic novel. It is indebted to Robert Miles’s work, which goes beyond simply enumerating Gothic conventions and instead formulates a theory of Gothic epistemology. It is also obliged to Eve Sedgwick’s work, which links Gothic epistemologies—what she calls paranoid reading positions—to the practice of literary criticism. “Gothic Archives” augments this work with a theory of the way that archives function in the Gothic novel, supplementing the above theories of Gothic epistemology with an account of the archive’s role in the Gothic as both a literal and a symbolic repository of cultural feelings and affects.
People were no longer so willing to accept their ?lot in life?. It was in this background that the genre of Gothic literature was first written. It was called gothic because it placed emphasis on emotions such as awe, terror, insignificance and vulnerability. Gothic novels were fascinated with the grotesque, horrible and supernatural. They were a reaction against realistic literature of the 18th century.
This Gothic concept of the battle between the intellectual and rational self and the irrational and the supernatural is portrayed in novels and short stories such as The Castle of Otrento, House of Usher, Imp of the Perverse, and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Horace Walpole’s, The Castle of Otranto, is regarded as the first gothic novel. It laid down many of the plot devices and characteristics that would become typical of the Gothic such as castles, decay of humanity, rough landscapes, and hidden identities. One of the things Walpole tried to do with this story was to blend it Romance of the rime and shift it towards an idea of mystery, hidden passages, ghosts, and the darker side of human ... ... middle of paper ... ... will once again be able to deal with the subject on an intellectual manner. Also, Hyde is the representation of irrationality since he has an unexplainable air of evil and “gives a strong feeling of deformity” (Stevenson 11).
Fictional literature can be categorized into many different genres: drama, romance, science fiction, tragedy, comedy, horror, and gothic. Gothic fiction borrows from horror by sampling mystery, dire setting, and chilling architecture. Romance is sampled in gothic fiction by the use of characters, firm emotions, and misguided love. Greenblatt writes, " Gothic became a label for the macabre, mysterious, supernatural, and terrifying, especially the pleasurably terrifying, in literature generally; the link that Romantic-period writers had forged between the Gothic and antiquated spaces was eventually loosened" (584). Horace Walpole wrote The Castle of Otranto in 1764.