Gothic Masculinity

Ellen Brinks

Effeminacy and the Supernatural in English and German Romanticism

219 pages
ISBN 0-8387-5524-0
LC 2003001836
Bucknell Studies in Eighteenth Century Literature and Culture

Cultural and individual fantasies of masculinity enter troubling terrain in gothic tales of British and German Romanticism. In the interiority of dreams and visionary spaces, a male protagonist makes a fateful encounter with a supernaturalized force and finds himself dispossessed of his real and symbolic masculine estate. Emphasizing the interdisciplinary range of this recurring motif, Ellen Brinks traces "distressed masculinity" in canonical instances of gothic imagination - Byron's Oriental Tales and Coleridge's Christabel - but also in works such as Hegel's Phenomenology of Mind, Keats's Hyperion fragments, and Freud's letters and scientific writings.

An elegant and compelling account of the construction of sex and gender in the Gothic, Gothic Masculinity will be of interest to scholars of sexuality, gender, queer theory, Romantic subjectivity, and the German and English Gothic.

About the author:

Ellen Brinks is an assistant professor of English at Colorado State University, where she teaches courses in British Romanticism, literary theory, and gothic literature and film. Her publications, which explore the cultural contexts of gender and sexuality and tensions between individual and social expresssions between individual and social expressions of identity, include essays on women and cartography, the intersection of economics and sexuality in contemporary film, and the politics and poetics of home in the works of twentieth-century lesbian writers.


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