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Inventing the Gothic Corpse

The Thrill of Human Remains in the Eighteenth-Century Novel

Authors: Shapira, Yael

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  • Argues that before there was Gothic fiction there was ‘the Gothic corpse’ 
    Uses the representation of the dead body as a lens on roads taken and not taken by the eighteenth-century novel 
    Examines work from a variety of writers, from Behn to Dacre

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eBook $79.99
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-76484-9
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $99.99
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-319-76483-2
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

Inventing the Gothic Corpse shows how a series of bold experiments in eighteenth-century British realist and Gothic fiction transform the dead body from an instructive icon into a thrill device. For centuries, vivid images of the corpse were used to deliver a spiritual or political message; today they appear regularly in Gothic and horror stories as a source of macabre pleasure. Yael Shapira’s book tracks this change at it unfolds in eighteenth-century fiction, from the early novels of Aphra Behn and Daniel Defoe, through the groundbreaking mid-century works of Samuel Richardson, Henry Fielding and Horace Walpole, to the Gothic fictions of Ann Radcliffe, Matthew Lewis, Charlotte Dacre and Minerva Press authors Isabella Kelly and Mrs. Carver.

In tracing this long historical arc, Shapira illuminates a hidden side of the history of the novel: the dead body, she shows, helps the fledgling literary form confront its own controversial ability to entertain. Her close scrutiny of fictional corpses across the long eighteenth century reveals how the dead body functions as a test of the novel’s intentions, a chance for novelists to declare their allegiances in the battle between the didactic and the “merely” pleasurable. 

About the authors

Yael Shapira is a lecturer in the Department of English Literature and Linguistics at Bar-Ilan University in Israel. Her work has appeared in Eighteenth-Century Fiction, Eighteenth-Century Life, Narrative, Women’s Writing and elsewhere. Her current research focuses on the forgotten Gothic novels of the Minerva Press in the Romantic period. 

Table of contents (6 chapters)

Table of contents (6 chapters)
  • Introduction: The Novel, the Corpse and the Eighteenth-Century Marketplace

    Shapira, Yael

    Pages 1-46

  • Spectacles for Sale: Reframing the Didactic Corpse in Behn and Defoe

    Shapira, Yael

    Pages 49-84

  • Fictional Corpses at Mid-Century: Richardson, Fielding and the Trouble with Hamlet

    Shapira, Yael

    Pages 85-131

  • Death, Delicacy and the Novel: The Corpse in Women’s Gothic Fiction

    Shapira, Yael

    Pages 135-175

  • Shamelessly Gothic: Enjoying the Corpse in The Monk and Zofloya

    Shapira, Yael

    Pages 177-217

Buy this book

eBook $79.99
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-76484-9
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $99.99
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-319-76483-2
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Inventing the Gothic Corpse
Book Subtitle
The Thrill of Human Remains in the Eighteenth-Century Novel
Authors
Copyright
2018
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-319-76484-9
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-76484-9
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-319-76483-2
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XII, 265
Topics