Essay on Gothic Literature : Gothic Fiction

2328 Words Apr 22nd, 2015 10 Pages
In the eighteenth century, “Gothic” meant anything that was unusual, disrespecting of tradition, or nonconforming. Gothic writing revolved around wicked, amazing, and sometimes destructive people, objects, or events. Much of Gothic literature was a result of disturbances in the eighteenth century. Mayhem erupted due to major changes in politics, economics, and social norms. Subsequently, Gothic literature valued the past with its ideas of aristocratic strength, passion, barbarity, and magic. The term “Gothic” was originally used to describe architecture, however, Horace Walpole used “Gothic” as a way to describe his story. The story outlined a new kind of fiction that involved superstition and apparitions. The Castle of Otranto was the first Gothic literature story. It had a medieval setting where ghosts would bring messages of surprise. Walpole’s ghosts were very realistic. Readers were frightened by the human-like characteristics that the ghosts possessed; the story was truly a thriller. Walpole opened the door for authors, as well as people, to use their voices to do the impossible (Emandi, 2013). During the 1780s through the 1830s, fiction endeavored for literary legitimacy. There were two classes of readers: the articulate classes and the reading public. The articulate class included well-educated men. The reading public included women, the working class, and the older folks. Women would enjoy steamy romance novels written by other women; women were new to the world…

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