113th Annual Conference - Portland, Oregon
Friday, November 6 - Sunday, November 8, 2015

Gothic II

Session Chair: 
David Arnold, "University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point"
Session 12: Sunday 12:10-1:40pm
Skyline IV (PH-ET)
Topic Area: 


  1. Anahit Manoukian, California State University Long Beach
    Carmen Laforet uses gothic characteristics in her novel Nada (1944) to reemphasize post-Civil War themes of violence and degeneracy in Spain where the nightmarish reality of the protagonist’s dark and decaying home consumed with daily violence becomes a metaphor for the socio-historic situation of Spain during its transition to dictatorship. 
  2. Baron Haber, University of California at Santa Barbara
    I interpret Mahasweta Devi’s Imaginary Maps, which depicts the neocolonization on the tribes of West Bengal, India. Drawing on Rob Nixon’s concept of “slow violence,” I demonstrate how Devi’s use of the gothic mode frames the neocolonial encounter as one of competing temporal paradigms, as the short-term temporality of resource-extraction confronts the long-term temporality of sustenance farming and ancestor worship.
  3. Laura Davis, Red Deer College
    This paper examines Margaret Atwood's collection of short stories, Stone Mattress (2014), in the tradition of gothic Canadian literature, and in the context of the Canadian history out of which it arises. On the one hand, charcters in these stories are plagued by ghosts that bring forth troubled personal histories; on the other hand, they are haunted by those that represent unsolved or unsettled national histories. Atwood intertwines the personal and the national in order to show that we must confront both to heal the self and the nation. 
  4. Diana Rose Newby, Columbia University
    Through a psychoanalytic reading of the music videos for Sia’s “Chandelier” and “Elastic Heart,” this paper sheds light their subtle breed of Gothic horror and the significance of negative viewer response. I argue that, in their explorations of abjection and split-subjectivity, Sia’s videos subvert the cultural and psychological fantasy of the unified self, prompting an uncomfortable yet crucial reconsideration of our most fundamental notions of identity.
Session Cancelled: