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"'The Dead Travel Fast'": The Gothic Politics of Irish Literature

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abstract
Although the Gothic was created by English authors it finds significant use in Irish literature. There has been debate over how this genre should be defined, but I would suggest that instead of trying to force the Gothic into the categories of mode/tradition or Catholic/Protestant, it should be allowed to enact its own mysterious nature, defying classification. The Gothic is instead a shadowy space that encompasses the Irish experience; enabling the expression of both the horrors of colonizer's guilt and the colonized's oppression. The first two chapters focus on Carmilla and Dracula, specifically how LeFanu and Stoker utilize the figure of the vampire not only to allegorize their struggles with Anglo-Irish identity, but also to show how that figure represents native Irish rebellion and its destruction and also how it emphasizes the importance of Catholicism in Ireland. My third chapter will consider the space opened by this reading of earlier works and discuss its implications on the study of the modern Irish Gothic, allowing us to trace its traditional status and its use by both Protestant and Catholic authors, thus discovering its ability to depict the issues of both groups as a result of its liminal qualities.
subject
Carmilla
Dracula
Irish Gothic
The Butcher Boy
contributor
Merritt, Laura (author)
Holdridge, Jefferson (committee chair)
Hena, Omaar (committee member)
Jenkins, Melissa (committee member)
date
2012-06-12T08:36:00Z (accessioned)
2012-06-12T08:36:00Z (available)
2012 (issued)
degree
English (discipline)
identifier
http://hdl.handle.net/10339/37289 (uri)
language
en (iso)
publisher
Wake Forest University
title
"'The Dead Travel Fast'": The Gothic Politics of Irish Literature
type
Thesis

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