Notable Books

Alison Milbank, God & the Gothic, available for pre-order

God & the Gothic

Religion, Romance and Reality in the English Literary Tradition

Alison Milbank

 

  • Offers an original reworking of Gothic fiction, which is usually read as a secularizing genre, as instead doing creative theological work
  • Takes the story right back to the Reformation, and locates tropes such as the usurper, fleeing heroine who uncovers mysteries, and the imprisoning castle to the Dissolution of the monasteries, the female martyrs, and the conflicted attitude to the Catholic past as tyranny to be escaped but also as something valuable lost
  • The Victorian period’s ghost stories are read as an intensification of a religious analysis, in the face of rampant materialism, itself the result of the loss of the sacramental and mediating spiritual practices in Protestantism
  • Later Gothic is concerned to re-enchant the material and reconnect natural and supernatural spheres
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(Sculpture by Sara Cunningham-Bell)

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