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All that Gothic

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Edited By Agnieszka Lowczanin and Dorota Wisniewska

This book provides a comprehensive introduction to the history, aesthetics and key themes of Gothic, the main issues and debates surrounding the genre along with the approaches and theories that have been applied to Gothic texts and films. The volume discusses a wide range of 18 th and 19 th century texts and moves into 20 th century literature and film. It explores the cultural resonances created by the genre and raises a variety of issues, including the ways in which Gothic monstrosity mimics same-sex desire and social transgression. The texts included in the volume argue that Gothic film and fiction animated the darker shadows of the dominant culture.
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Gothic Dispatches from War Zones

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Elisabeth Bronfen

At the end of his remarkable elegiac poem in praise of war, “1914,” Rupert Brooke expresses the wish: “If I should die, think only this of me:/ That there’s some corner of a foreign field/ That is for ever England. There shall be/ In that rich earth of richer dust concealed;/ A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,/Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,/ A body of England’s, breathing English air,/ Washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home” (qtd. in Roberts 71). On first view, the image of a soldier’s grave which these lines evoke seems to have little to do with gothic sensibility. Yet looked at “preposterously”1 – as this essay proposes – through the lens of George Romero’s Diary of the Dead (2007), and in so doing treating the contemporary zombie film as a recycling of the notion of war’s haunting we have inherited from World War I, the poetic rendition of a soldier, decomposing in foreign soil, takes on a far more sinister tone. Dislocating the boundary between the living and the dead precisely by virtue of the cultural afterlife with which Rupert Brooke endows the soldier’s corpse, this uncanny body emerges as part of an invading army which even after death will continue to contaminate the foreign country’s soil whose border the British military force has already crossed as part of a global campaign.

My proposed preposterous crossmapping...

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