Gothic Literature and Culture

Research into Gothic at Lancaster is distinctive for its focus on the multi-medial and multi-disciplinary contexts of Gothic: literature alongside film, television, fashion, art and popular culture.

The department boasts a number of scholars who have published on Gothic as well as an exceptionally large and thriving community of research students. We regularly hold major Gothic events: in 2009 we hosted ‘Monstrous Media/Spectral Subjects’, the ninth biannual conference of the International Gothic Association; in 2012, our international, interdisciplinary conference ‘Capturing Witches: Histories, Stories, Images’ commemorated the 400-year anniversary of the trial and execution of the Lancashire Witches.

In 2013, ‘Beyond Twilight’ brought together authors, readers and scholars of Young Adult Gothic fiction. We also organised regular events on a more intimate scale including talks and screenings at local arts cinema, the Dukes; a fortnightly reading group in term-time; and an annual Study Day. Gothic options are also available to undergraduate students and taught postgraduates, with modules including Victorian Gothic, Children in Horror Fiction and Film and Contemporary Gothic: Text and Screen.

Members of staff with an interest in Gothic

Recent publications

Kamilla Elliott, Portraiture and British gothic fiction: the rise of picture identification, 1764-1835, Johns Hopkins University Press, 2013. Short-listed for the Allan Lloyd Smith Memorial Prize.

Contemporary Gothic Reading Group

The Contemporary Gothic Reading Group meets fortnightly during term-time, to discuss recently-published Gothic fiction. All staff and postgraduates from across the university are welcome.

Contemporary Gothic Study Day

The Contemporary Gothic Study Day is held annually and provides an opportunity for current postgraduates to showcase their research. Guest speakers have included Fred Botting (Kingston University), Isabella van Elferen (University of Utrecht), Stacey Abbott (University of Roehampton) and Dominic Mitchell (screenwriter of BBC Three’s In the Flesh).

Beyond Twilight: Young Adult Gothic Fiction

The Beyond Twilight project is run by Catherine Spooner and Chloe Buckley and explores Gothic in children’s and Young Adult fiction. On 27 September 2013 a day-long symposium was held bringing together writers, readers and scholars.

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