The Significance of the Gothic Genre in English Literature

You don’t often hear about gothic themes when people talk about English literature. Even so, this genre has had a great impact on English literature. As such, it is taught in many schools.

The Gothic genre is one of the easiest to recognize. It’s known for the shocking family secrets, the dark dungeons, and the big castles. In this literature, you can read about ghosts and villains – as well as a lot of terror. The Gothic genre has been very influential in the English literary history. This is part of the reason why every teacher will mention it in their classes, especially at higher academic levels.

Gothic Literature

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Gothic Elements Taught in School

Whether you are a student at college or university and study literature, the topic will definitely come up. The Gothic genre lesson will most likely be one of the most intriguing, engaging of them all. This might even prompt you to write your research papers or dissertations on the topic. The Gothic genre is certainly an interesting topic to explore and write about.

If this is the case, you can make your task easier by using writing services to help you craft the paper. Education is not easy these days, and you probably have a lot on your plate at any given moment. A dissertation writing service can make this task much easier and provide you with a Gothic-themed dissertation that will be as impressive as it gets. With a bit of help and a unique topic like this one, you’re bound to get a high mark for your work.

Students are often amazed by this genre. Older generations grew up with Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the popular The House on the Haunted Hill. These are all-time-favorites strengthening the Gothic theme, and their unique elements have made them some of the most popular films of all time.

In academic circles, the gothic is frequently discussed. Start with Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard novel to the tales of evil uncles by Lemony Snickett – students have many amazing literary pieces to read. Another popular choice is Darren Shan, featuring vampires and werewolves for the reader’s excitement.

Even the more classical pieces are taught in schools. What you might not know is that Macbeth has elements from the gothic genre, such as paranoia, madness, nightmares, and a bit of the supernatural. This is followed by Jane Eyre, Jekyll and Hyde, Sherlock Holmes, and of course, Frankenstein – all brilliant pieces of the English literature.

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Understanding ‘The Gothic’: Why Is It Significant to English Literature?

No one can say with certainty when literary gothic first appeared in the world. Some argue that this started with The Castle of Otranto, Horace Walpole’s novel. Even Austen mocks this genre in Northanger Abbey. Fast forward a few years, and the classic Vardy the Vampire only made this genre sound silly. It soon gained itself a very unserious reputation.

Things have changed a lot over the years. In fact, many believe that the origins of gothic start long, long before the first poems were published. This can be witnessed in Gothic architecture, those grotesque gargoyles and strange structures that we can see in some of the major cities, dating back centuries.

Freud spoke of this as a ‘creeping horror’, something that excites dread in our minds.

Not so long after this, the English literature starts using Gothic elements in some of its best works. In Edmun Burke’s Sublime, we can easily notice the connection between terror and awe. Ann Radcliffe work is one of the most discussed pieces in academic circles, offering a freshness in emotions that differs from most other genres.

Gothic elements draw in readers, and they have done so for a long time. They tap into people’s deepest terrors by using mysterious settings and supernatural elements.

One of the fiercest aspects of this genre is place. This is reflected in Susan Hill’s The Woman in Black. In her masterpiece, Hill uses a unique language to describe the place, talking of dripping stone walls, ivy-clad monastery ruins, and uninhabited castles. The Gothic writing style puts the picture inside the mind of the readers, making this one of the most descriptive genres in English literature even today.

Yes, the gothic is complex and difficult to study. However, it is considered a good vehicle for exploring people’s creativity. The heightened language, the dark and clichéd settings and scary characters offer many opportunities to explore and debate. Over the years, experts have been exploring the effects of the language used and the impact it has on the readers.

Wrapping Up

The gothic is a genre that has been avoided, parodied, and ridiculed in the past. Some of the greatest names in English literature have spoken of this genre as something silly, unrealistic, and simply bad. The genre has proven them wrong. The gothic offers a wonderful opportunity to become more imaginative, dig into the deeper parts of ourselves, and explore an entirely different writing style that isn’t comparable with other genres. There’s no doubt that this genre is of high significance for the English literature.



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