orality

Careful, they bite: Dangerous Mouths in Gothic Texts Thumbnail

Careful, they bite: Dangerous Mouths in Gothic Texts

Posted by Dr. Jennifer Brown on December 22, 2012 in Guest Blog, Jennifer Brown, Uncategorized tagged with , , , , , , ,

Cannibals populate ancient myths, fairy tales, children’s literature, tales of survival, and lots of horror films. This preoccupation with orality is suggestive of the underlying warning in many Gothic urban cannibal tales – rapacity is monstrous. Hunger becomes more than a need for food, it becomes an expression of deep-seated desires for connections and of uneasiness with the modern condition. This is particularly evident in city narratives where isolation and anonymity lead to a sense of a fragmented existence and a deep need to create a sense of wholeness. Can these Gothic biters say something about modern isolation, urban anonymity, and the privileging of consumption in contemporary society?

Eat me, drink me, love me: The dangers of eating in Gothic texts Thumbnail

Eat me, drink me, love me: The dangers of eating in Gothic texts

Posted by Dr. Jennifer Brown on December 15, 2012 in Guest Blog, Jennifer Brown tagged with , , , ,

Uncontrollable appetite is repulsive and taboo. It reminds us of our animalistic selves and incites a level of horror and fascination that is relished in Gothic texts and by readers of the Gothic. Gothic texts accord a power to all things oral that suggests something much deeper and darker is going on in our dealings with what we put in our mouths.

Biters, suckers, screamers: Gothic Orality Thumbnail

Biters, suckers, screamers: Gothic Orality

Posted by Dr. Jennifer Brown on December 05, 2012 in Guest Blog, Jennifer Brown tagged with , , , ,

Gothic texts are often concerned with the question of the human body as food, and the mouth as a site of danger, contamination, death or corruption. Popular representations of the cannibal remind us of the voracity of human hunger and the potentially limitless nature of appetite. The cannibal figure represents the fear that our appetite for consumption knows no end, and indeed reminds us of our own potential inhumanity. Gothic orality involves dangerous food and dangerous mouths.