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Wednesday, November 02, 2005

The origin of Creepy

Last night I was discussing with a friend and writer the shift in thinking that propelled English society at the end of the 18th Century to embrace the gothic novel -- ideas ranging from the angst caused by a cultural revolution, to the more insular family and occurences of incest ( a theme in many gothic novels) and even to the invention of the hallway -- previously nonexistent in houses.

Contemporary society embraces the gothic in phases, we're in one right now in fact if you want my assessment of the many tv shows and movies dealing with the paranormal. But since that is not my area of expertise I'll recommend an earlier 18th Century book -- if you haven't read it then do so: Evelina by Frances Burney -- get the Norton Critical Edition -- the essays in the back are invaluable.