Taking The Castle of Otranto as your example, outline the main conventions

Taking The Castle of Otranto as your example, outline the main conventions

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Taking The Castle of Otranto as your example, outline the main conventions
of the Gothic novel, and show how your knowledge of

Taking The Castle of Otranto as your example, outline the main
conventions of the Gothic novel, and show how your knowledge of these
conventions affects your reading of Northanger Abbey. Is Northanger
Abbey most accurately described as parody of the Gothic genre, or is
there a more complicated relationship going on?

Gothic novels purport to revive old stories and beliefs, exploring
personal, psychical encounters with the taboo (Williams, 2000). The
genre, as typified by The Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole,
involves a beautiful innocent young woman who is held captive by an
older, powerful, evil man in his large, ancient and gloomy residence
for his own lustful purposes and who escapes, with the aid of
supernatural manifestations, errors caused by “false surmises and
conjectures based on partial narratives” (Hoeveler, 1995, p127) and a
handsome young hero. Walpole's novel centers around the tyrant where
the female writers in the genre, for example, Ann Radcliffe, focus
more on the female victim and what she is thinking and feeling,
exploring women’s anxieties about their lack of control of their
feelings, their bodies, and their property, and their desire for
something far more extraordinary and exciting than simply to be a
domestic woman. The use of the supernatural by Walpole is so frequent
and monstrous as to excite laughter rather than terror but for
Radcliffe and Austen the supernatural is not visible but is an
invisible hand that makes sure that good always triumphs and evil is
always punished (Andriopoulos, 1999) .

It is necessary to be aware of these Gothic conve...


... middle of paper ...


...omy and the Gothic Novel.” ELH 66.3 (1999): 739-59.

Austen, Jane. The Novels of Jane Austen. Ed. R.W. Chapman. 3rd
edition.

Oxford:OUP, 1933-69

Cudden, J.A. Dictionary of Literary Terms & Literary Theory. Penguin:
London, 1999.

Hoeveler, Diane. “Vindicating Northanger Abbey: Mary Wollstonecraft,
Jane Austen, and Gothic Feminism.” Jane Austen and Discourses of
Feminism. Ed. Devony Looser. Houndsmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire:
Macmillan, 1995. 117-35

Jerinic, Maria. “In Defense of the Gothic: Rereading Northanger
Abbey.” Jane Austen and Discourses of Feminism. Ed. Devoney Looser.
Houndsmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire: Macmillian, 1995. 137-49

Neill, Edward. “The Secret of Northanger Abbey.” Essays in Criticism
47 (1997): 13-32

Williams, Anne. “The Horror, the Horror: Recent Studies in Gothic
Fiction.” Modern Fiction Studies 46.3 (2000): 789-99

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