The Literature Of Terror The Gothic Tradition Volume This two volume set the other half is Volume The Modern Gothic by David Punter is than simply a history of the gothic form in American and British literature It s an ambitious attempt to redefine th
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Title: The Literature Of Terror: The Gothic Tradition, Volume 1
Author: David Punter
This two volume set the other half is Volume 2 The Modern Gothic by David Punter is than simply a history of the gothic form in American and British literature It s an ambitious attempt to redefine the word gothic so that it encompasses most of fantastic fiction and film for the past 200 years under a unifying theme a preoccupation with fear This is, of course,This two volume set the other half is Volume 2 The Modern Gothic by David Punter is than simply a history of the gothic form in American and British literature It s an ambitious attempt to redefine the word gothic so that it encompasses most of fantastic fiction and film for the past 200 years under a unifying theme a preoccupation with fear This is, of course, an extremely broad definition, so don t be surprised if you find yourself taking the theoretical sections of the book with a grain of salt Also, since the book was first written in the late 1970s, much of the discussion of language and symbol relies on rather outdated Marxist and Freudian theories Punter apologizes for the latter in the preface to the second edition, saying that rather than doing a massive revision, he decided to leave it largely as an unrestored period piece, with its own characteristic style, silhouette, and mood while adding additional material on the contemporary gothic Those caveats aside, however, The Literature of Terror is mostly successful as a comprehensive study And it s an enormously useful reference for anyone with a than passing interest in horror literature Plus, it benefits from being the work of a single author Punter is an extremely well read scholar who perceives fascinating connections between a wide variety of books and films, and he explains his ideas lucidly enough that you can judge for yourself how far you agree with them Some of the high points are Punter s overview of what the word gothic means in other fields such as architecture his summaries of the roles of graveyard poetry, the sentimental novel, and the theory of the sublime in the development of the gothic concept and his inclusion as gothic and even horror writers of such notables as Isak Dinesen, William S Burroughs, Thomas Pynchon, J.G Ballard, Angela Carter, Thomas Hawkes, and Robert Coover If that s not enough to tempt you, the footnotes and bibliography alone offer ample yet well chosen pointers to authors whose entertaining fiction you may not have discovered yet Best of all, The Literature of Terror is written in English that is, not loaded down with annoying words such as transgressive and trope that mar so much of postmodern criticism You can browse for information about specific authors or dip into it at your leisure without losing the thread And for an academic work, it s darn fun to read Be sure to get both Volume 1 and Volume 2 Fiona Webster