Monday, February 13, 2012

Real Gothic Literature

Let us wash last post's notion of gothic literature from our brains, and look at some real literature. The blog of Mike Kelly, Curator of Books in the Fales Library & Special Collections at NYU has a post about the new Gothic literature, recommending the above pieces as the best examples available.

Gothic fiction, in tone, feeds on a pleasing sort of terror. It places heavy emphasis on atmosphere, using setting and diction to build suspense and a sense of unease in the reader. Melodrama and parody (including self-parody) were other long-standing features of the Gothic in literature. It is an offshoot of Romantic literature (which is not be confused with romance literature and those trashy books they sell in the checkout line at the grocery store) but, ultimately, the genre has given way to modern horror fiction. The New Gothic literature can thereby be a bit hard to sort out from any old gore novel, and some of its authors -- like Anne Rice -- have gotten fairly mainstream. Check it out! And feel free to post any other Gothic literature recommendations in the comments.

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