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Add to favorites. Related tags. Events on LibraryThing Local. No events listed. You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data. Murray-Prior, Rosa Caroline. Praed, Campbell, Mrs. Praed, Rosa. Bromelton, Queensland, Australia. This made him vow never to be put in that position again. He is determined to build his own plantation, complete with land, slaves, a family, and the hope of a male heir. Even though Eudora Welty — herself rejected being labeled a Gothic writer, she is nevertheless considered a transitional figure in the Southern Gothic from Faulkner to more contemporary writers.
Some scholars, such as Ruth D.
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Weston, have argued that Welty should not be placed in the Southern Gothic category. But he turns out to be a conman who seduces her, only to steal her wooden leg and leave her stranded in a barn loft. When the grandmother announces his identity, The Misfit orders the family killed. And frequently it is an action in which the devil has been the unwilling instrument of grace.
But as the stories show, redemption often comes at a terrible price. Having lost his faith during the war, he takes to the city of Taulkinham, intent on spreading his atheist doctrine in his Church Without Christ. Yet he feels haunted by Christ and by gothic nightmares of being buried alive. Spiraling ever downwards, Motes ends up killing his competitor and doppelganger Solace Layfield, before a final act of self-degradation—and possible salvation—in which he blinds himself, puts shards of glass in his shoes, and wraps barbed wire around his torso.
The Violent Bear It Away is a dark tale of fourteen-year-old Francis Tarwater, who has been raised to be a prophet by his great-uncle, the self-declared backwoods prophet Mason Tarwater. When Mason dies, Francis moves to the city to find his secular uncle Rayber and his mentally deficient son Bishop.
Francis was brought up believing his mission was to baptize Bishop. But the return of her ex-husband brings violence and eventual isolation and alienation. American theater of the s and s was infused with a heavy dose of Southern Gothic sensibility thanks to the plays of Tennessee Williams — Characters with varying degrees of illness populate his works, and his own sexual orientation, socially unacceptable at the time, found its way into plays such as Cat on a Hot Tin Roof , in which Brick, who is gay, struggles with his unhappy marriage and with his dying but domineering father, Big Daddy.
In other plays, such as The Glass Menagerie , A Streetcar Named Desire , and Sweet Bird of Youth , Williams created Gothic spaces of boundary crossings as well as other familiar tropes of the Southern Gothic, such as disintegrating southern families, alienation, loneliness, alcoholism, and physical and psychological violence.
Monday musings on Australian literature: Australian Gothic (19th century)
Rather than a mere freakshow, Williams uses the characters in his plays to question the notion of normalcy and to explore the discrepancies between private and public selves. While he worked in many genres, Truman Capote — is often placed in the school of Southern Gothic writers. The Pulitzer Prize-winning To Kill a Mockingbird is told by the tomboy Scout and draws on Gothic traits to examine boundaries of race, class, and gender in the s South. African Americans have long had their own unique perspective on Southern Gothic and the repressed racial tensions at the heart of the genre.
- The Anthology of Colonial Australian Gothic Fiction.
- Literary Non-Fiction.
- The MUP Anthology of Australian Colonial Gothic Fiction!
In Playing in the Dark , Toni Morrison examines the ways in which early white writers of the American Gothic used the black slave body as a site onto which was projected the various shortcomings, failures, and repressed desires of the white American psyche. It is this otherness that African American writers have challenged. No, I am not a spook like those who haunted Edgar Allan Poe … When [people] approach me they see only my surroundings, themselves, or figments of their imagination—indeed, everything and anything except me.
While not a southerner, Morrison still employs Southern Gothic in her seminal novel Beloved , a text that takes place mostly in Ohio but is haunted by traumatic events that occurred in the South. Cormac McCarthy is arguably the most critically acclaimed contemporary practitioner of the Southern Gothic.
The Pulitzer Prize-winning novel is a post-apocalyptic story set in an unspecified southern location. A father and his son traverse a barren wasteland of corpses and marauding bands of cannibals to reach the ocean. While the group of writers is predominantly white and male, a few women like Dorothy Allison have also been placed in the Rough South category.
In many of the stories and novels by male Rough South writers, such as Barry Hannah, Larry Brown, William Gay, Tom Franklin, and Ron Rash, the antagonists are violent men of seemingly pure evil, men driven by incredible bloodthirst who will stop at nothing to satisfy their deadly desires.
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The Confederate and Union dead resting in the ground have been joined by other victims of horrible crimes:. The country was built to hide those dead by foul deed, it sucked at them. Back to the flood of , lynchings, gun and knife duels were common stories here. Muddy water made a fine lost tomb. In true Gothic fashion, the return of the repressed past brings forth guilt, responsibility, and a grotesque display of violence.
The Southern Gothic remains undead, its territory broader and more inclusive than ever before. While few southern writers are content to work solely in the Southern Gothic vein, many nonetheless tap into the sharp divisions that make up their region, the beautiful pastoral Arcadia and the grotesque deformities that rise to the surface both literally and figuratively.
The attempt to come to terms with this chasm—or to expose its cracks and fissures—remains a potent and relevant vehicle driving a substantial body of southern literature today.
Scholarship on the Southern Gothic has seen a dramatic rise in the 21st century, both in volume, scope, and acceptance. Yet there is still a sparsity of monographs covering the full spectrum of Southern Gothic. Instead, various chapters and articles about specific writers of Southern Gothic are spread out over monographs and anthologies dedicated to American literature, Gothic literature, American Gothic literature, Southern literature, or specific southern writers.
Therefore, the history of Southern Gothic scholarship begins with more general works and slowly becomes more specific. The renewed academic interest in the American Gothic spilled over into southern studies and led to monographs focusing on Gothic elements in specific southern writers. But scholars still struggled with the legitimacy of the genre.
So while G. Both monographs, while not specific studies of the Southern Gothic, nevertheless focus on the instability of some of the central categories that have been used to build narratives and counter-narratives of the South: race and gender. And they draw on postmodern and poststructuralist theory to revisit and, indeed, reconstruct given assumptions about the South and canonical works of southern literature. Gross argued that modern African American writers used elements of Southern Gothic in more realistic ways to point to the horrors of racism. Maisha L. Scholars working in this vein have embraced a postcolonial and transnational approach in the rethinking of the South and its literature.
In fact, the 21st century has been a tumultuous era of change and re-examination within southern studies. Traditional and monolithic themes such as race, place, and past are being re-examined, challenged, revised, and injected with newer approaches and topics such as trauma theory and queer studies.
Find this resource:. Castillo Street, Susan, and Charles L. Crow, eds. The Palgrave Handbook of the Southern Gothic. New York: Palgrave, Crow, Charles L. History of the Gothic: American Gothic.
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Cardiff: University of Wales Press, A Companion to American Gothic. Edited by Charles L. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell, Ellis, Jay, ed.