The Gothic as Portrayed Through Taboo Material in Frankenstein
The distinctive features of the Gothic may be defined as a series of strategies, partly evasive, partly revelatory for dealing with tabooed material. Discuss with reference to Frankenstein.
Frankenstein, although not placed within the 'gothic' setting of a large brooding castle in a Catholic town, is nonetheless immediately identifiable as gothic due to the macabre and uncanny set of circumstances it describes. It is also, "melodramatically violent, and often deals with aberrant psychological states" which is part of M. H. Abrams' definition of what is 'Gothic'. Eve Kosovsky Sedgewick describes certain key characteristics that relate to the idea of the 'gothic novel': an "involuted" style of writing; "possibilities of incest"; "poisonous effects of guilt"; the "unspeakable"; "doubles", heroines of "trembling sensitivity" and "impetuous" heroes. These subjects inspired fear in the reader and subsequently a revulsion for the subject described. Because of this dramatic creation of horror and tension, which perhaps served to detract from more minor elements of the plot, taboo subjects could be more easily explored, new...
Join Now to View Premium Content
GradeSaver provides access to 861 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 6554 literature essays, 1778 sample college application essays, 269 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.
Already a member? Log in