Gothic Tales

Framsida
Penguin, 14 aug. 2000 - 366 sidor

'"The curse—the curse!" I looked up in terror. In the great mirror opposite I saw myself, and right behind, another wicked, fearful self'

An encounter with the supernatural in an everyday setting accentuates its strangeness; a truth used to eerie effect in Gaskell's Gothic tales. A portrait turned to the wall, a hidden manuscript, a mysterious child that lives on the freezing moors, a doppelganger formed by a woman's bitter curse: all of these things hint at male tyranny and woman as avenging angel—or devil.

Gaskell was fascinated by the dualities in women's lives and the way in which fact and fiction merge. 'Disappearances', a mix of gossip, legend and fact, relates stories of mysterious vanishings, 'Lois the Witch', based on an account of the Salem witch hunts, shows how sexual desire and jealousy lead to communal hysteria and persecution, while 'The Grey Woman' explores a common Gothic theme, the way in which the ghosts of the past always return to haunt us.

This edition includes an introduction, chronology, explanatory notes and an appendix giving a reader's response to 'Disappearances'.

 

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LibraryThing Review

Användarrecension  - Smiler69 - LibraryThing

The Old Nurse's Story, about a beautiful ghost child intent on luring a warm-blooded child into the freezing nights on the moors; The Squire's Story, about a gentleman with a nebulous past who moves ... Läs hela recensionen

LibraryThing Review

Användarrecension  - streamsong - LibraryThing

These are quite different from modern horror tales. Some have supernatural elements such as curses, ghosts and doppelgangers. Others are more an exploration of the twisted side of human nature-- a son ... Läs hela recensionen

Utvalda sidor

Innehåll

Disappearances
xxxv
The Old Nurses Story
9
The Squires Story
31
The Poor Clare
47
The Doom of the Griffiths
101
Lois the Witch
137
The Crooked Branch
225
Curious if True
269
The Grey Woman
285
APPENDIX
339
NOTES
340
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Om författaren (2000)

Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell was born in London in 1810, but she spent her formative years in Cheshire, Stratford-upon-Avon and the north of England. In 1832 she married the Reverend William Gaskell, who became well known as the minister of the Unitarian Chapel in Manchester's Cross Street. As well as leading a busy domestic life as minister's wife and mother of four daughters, she worked among the poor, traveled frequently and wrote. Mary Barton (1848) was her first success.

Two years later she began writing for Dickens's magazine, Household Words, to which she contributed fiction for the next thirteen years, notably a further industrial novel, North and South (1855). In 1850 she met and secured the friendship of Charlotte Brontë. After Charlotte's death in March 1855, Patrick Brontë chose his daughter's friend and fellow-novelist to write The Life of Charlotte Brontë (1857), a probing and sympathetic account, that has attained classic stature. Elizabeth Gaskell's position as a clergyman's wife and as a successful writer introduced her to a wide circle of friends, both from the professional world of Manchester and from the larger literary world. Her output was substantial and completely professional. Dickens discovered her resilient strength of character when trying to impose his views on her as editor of Household Words. She proved that she was not to be bullied, even by such a strong-willed man.

Her later works, Sylvia's Lovers (1863), Cousin Phillis (1864) and Wives and Daughters (1866) reveal that she was continuing to develop her writing in new literary directions. Elizabeth Gaskell died suddenly in November 1865.

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