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Expanding the Gothic Canon

Studies in Literature, Film and New Media


Edited By Anna Kędra-Kardela and Andrzej Sławomir Kowalczyk

This volume offers a survey of analyses of Gothic texts, including literary works, feature films, a TV serial, and video games, with a view to showing the evolution and expansion of the Gothic convention across the ages and the media. The temporal scope of the book is broad: the chapters cover narratives from the early and mid-eighteenth century, predating the birth of the convention in 1764, through Romantic and Victorian novels, to the contemporary manifestations of the Gothic. Primarily designed for graduate and postgraduate students, the book sets out to acquaint them with both the convention and different theoretical approaches. The studies presented here could also prove inspirational for fellow scholars and helpful for university teachers, the book becoming an item on the reading lists in Gothic literature, film and media courses.
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CHAPTER TWELVE: The Murder House, or the Archaic Mother in American Horror Story


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The Murder House, or the Archaic Mother in American Horror Story


The Gothic was always a family affair, and the family it courted perpetually in decay.

(Lucie Armitt)

And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication.

(Revelation 17:4)

Approaching the Bad Place

As a descendant of multiple parents, the first season of Brad Falchuk and Ryan Murphy’s critically acclaimed TV series American Horror Story (FX Networks, 2011-) is a televised monstrous patchwork with some of the most overdone ingredients of what Bailey identifies as “the contemporary haunted house formula” in which “a sentient and malign” setting becomes a new abode for an unsuspecting family.1 Subsequently, ← 247 | 248 →

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