Canadian Gothic

Literature, History, and the Spectre of Self-Invention

Author(s) Cynthia Sugars

Language: English

Genre(s): Literary Criticism

Series: Gothic Literary Studies

  • January 2014 · 325 pages ·216x138mm

  • · Hardback - 9780708327005
  • · eBook - pdf - 9781783160006
  • · eBook - epub - 9781783160778

About The Book

This book explores the Gothic tradition in Canadian literature by tracing a distinctive reworking of the British Gothic in Canada. It traces the ways the Gothic genre was reinvented for a specifically Canadian context. On the one hand, Canadian writers expressed anxiety about the applicability of the British Gothic tradition to the colonies; on the other, they turned to the Gothic for its vitalising rather than unsettling potential. After charting this history of Gothic infusion, Canadian Gothic turns its attention to the body of Aboriginal and diasporic writings that respond to this discourse of national self-invention from a post-colonial perspective. These counter-narratives unsettle the naturalising force of this invented history, rendering the sense of Gothic comfort newly strange. The Canadian Gothic tradition has thus been a conflicted one, which reimagines the Gothic as a form of cultural sustenance. This volume offers an important reconsideration of the Gothic legacy in Canada.


Introduction: Settled Unsettlement; or, Familiarizing the Uncanny Chapter 1: Here There Be Monsters: Wilderness Gothic and Psychic Projection Chapter 2: Haunted by a Lack of Ghosts: Gothic Absence and Settler Melancholy Chapter 3: French-Canadian Gothic: Excess as Emplacement Chapter 4: Local Familiars: Gothic Infusion and Settler Indigenization Chapter 5: Playing Fort-Da with History: Settler Postcolonial Gothic Chapter 6: Strangers Within: Unsettling the Canadian Gothic Chapter 7: Indigenous Ghost-Dancing: At Home on Native Land Conclusion: The Spectre of Self-Invention

About the Author(s)

Author(s): Cynthia Sugars

Cynthia Sugars is a Professor of English at the University of Ottawa where she specialises in Canadian literature, Gothic theory, and postcolonialism.

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