A study guide to Gothic literature. The Gothic Novel is believed to have emerged sometime in the late eighteen hundreds, inspired partly by the Gothic architecture of its namesake. Typically the setting is usually a ruined manor or castle alone in an out-of-the way area, away from a larger city or culture. It is more about the Gothic tradition than the Gothic architecture itself. It is a written language that contains a varied use of rhyme and meter, along with occasional use of the canticle.
Gothic literature has become one of the most popular genres within the English language. Most people associate it with horror and tales of ghosts and vampires. The majority of Gothic novels are written under this genre. There has been an increase in the number of writers who have gained appreciation for the Gothic genre. The most famous of this type of writer is the Gothic poet John Keats, who is best known for his works “The Heart Songs” and “The Artillerie.”
Writing about Gothic literature brings about the question, “What is Gothic literature?” This is a particularly valid question considering that there is such a wide variety of it. What all Gothic literature has in common is its dark, usually violent, themes and, oftentimes, a desire to depict or fantasize death and misfortune as a means of escape from the pain of life.
One can classify Gothic literature into three major sub-genres. The first is that which concerns itself with England and the surrounding region in which it was created. The second is that which concerns itself with southern Europe and the area called the Low Countries. The third is the genre that deal with Eastern Europe and is often referred to as “Goth Art.” Though these three sub-genres have their own characteristics, they often have their origins in one or more of the other sub-genres.
The most important characteristic of Gothic literature is the use of macabre imagery and macabre stories. Vampires, zombies, and blood are a common element in Gothic literature. Gothic fiction writers have been known to include murder, torture, and cruelty as a way of setting the scenes for their stories. Sexual themes have also been widely used in both literature. The sexual tension between characters in Gothic tales adds to the appeal of this literature. Gothic romance is especially popular.
There is great significance placed upon Gothic literature among today’s generation of Gothic novelists and artists. Gothic novels and art are often discussed at academic gatherings, and the popularity of Gothic literature continues to grow. As this type of literature gains more popularity, we are likely to see even more creative goth artists emerge. Hopefully, the goth sub-genre will continue to expand and more Gothic literature will be given the attention it deserves.