A quick primer on the development of the Gothic in 18th-19th British literature

I stumbled across some interesting pages at the British Museum website that contain, among other things, some essays by academics that seem pitched to a non-academic audience. The section I looked through is called  Discovering Literature: Romantics & Victorians. Here, I found a short piece written in 2014 by Prof. John Mullan entitled, “The Origins of the Gothic.”  In two pages, he makes concise comments about a sequence of Gothic and Gothic-influenced novels, beginning with Hugh Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto and concluding with Wilkie Collins’ Woman in White.  Along the way he links Mrs. Radcliffe, Jane Austin, Mary Shelley, the Brontë’s and so forth in a way that I found useful when considering the wider literary context out of which Mary Shelley was writing her “ghost story.”

The origins of the Gothic by John Mullan

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