Britain, France and the Gothic, 1764-1820: The Import of Terror

Britain, France and the Gothic, 1764-1820: The Import of Terror

by Angela Wright
     
 

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In describing his proto-Gothic fiction, The Castle of Otranto (1764), as a translation, Horace Walpole was deliberately playing on national anxieties concerning the importation of war, fashion and literature from France in the aftermath of the Seven Years' War. In the last decade of the eighteenth century, as Britain went to war again with France, this time in the…  See more details below

Overview

In describing his proto-Gothic fiction, The Castle of Otranto (1764), as a translation, Horace Walpole was deliberately playing on national anxieties concerning the importation of war, fashion and literature from France in the aftermath of the Seven Years' War. In the last decade of the eighteenth century, as Britain went to war again with France, this time in the wake of revolution, the continuing connections between Gothic literature and France through the realms of translation, adaptation and unacknowledged borrowing led to strong suspicions of Gothic literature taking on a subversive role in diminishing British patriotism. Angela Wright explores the development of Gothic literature in Britain in the context of the fraught relationship between Britain and France, offering fresh perspectives on the works of Walpole, Radcliffe, 'Monk' Lewis and their contemporaries.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Wright's elegantly written volume offers original perspectives and insights at every turn … Consistently and convincingly argued throughout, Britain, France and the Gothic avoids the pitfalls of unspecified "influences" and general similarities. Instead it maps channels of contact, borrowing, adaptation, rewriting and translation in order to demonstrate how Gothic fully participated in the many networks of Franco-British cultural exchange between the Seven Years' War and the post-Napoleonic era. A crucial contribution to studies of Gothic and the cross-cultural dimensions of British Romanticism, Wright's book is set to change how we study and discuss these literary manifestations beyond purely national boundaries."
Diego Saglia, BARS Bulletin and Review

"Britain, France and the Gothic, 1764–1820 is packed with precise textual analysis, clear historical investigation and contextualization, and many a well-turned sentence."
The Year's Work in English Studies

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781107034068
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
04/30/2013
Series:
Cambridge Studies in Romanticism Series, #99
Pages:
240
Product dimensions:
5.98(w) x 8.98(h) x 0.67(d)

Meet the Author

Angela Wright is Senior Lecturer in Romantic Literature at the University of Sheffield. She is author of Gothic Fiction: A Reader's Guide to Essential Criticism (2007).

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