The Second Session: Wednesday 29th October, 2.00pm-3.30pm

With almost serendipitous organisation, the next Reading the Gothic date coincides with ‘Twilight of the Gothic’ talk by Dr. Joseph Crawford which is taking place on campus. This is taking place from 3.30pm-5.00pm so in order to fit around this, I though we could meet at the usual time of 2.00pm and then finish early in order to attend the talk. Just make sure that you contact Sam George on s.george@herts.ac.uk in order to book a place. If you are unable to attend the talk, fear not, you can always come for the reading group alone.

The blurb for Dr. Crawford’s book reads:

‘This book explores the history of the paranormal romance genre; from its origins in the revisionist horror fiction of the 1970s, via its emergence as a minor sub-genre of romantic fiction in the early 1990s, to its contemporary expansion in recent years into an often-controversial genre of mainstream fiction. Tracing the genre from its roots in older Gothic fiction written by and for women, it explores the interconnected histories of Gothic and romantic fiction, from Ann Radcliffe and Jane Austen in the eighteenth century to Buffy, Twilight, True Blood and The Vampire Diaries in the present day. In doing so, it investigates the extent to which the post-Twilight paranormal romance really does represent a break from older traditions of Gothic fiction – and just what it is about the genre that has made it so extraordinarily divisive, captivating millions of readers whilst simultaneously infuriating and repelling so many others.’

In order to tie in with this and the talk, I thought we should be a little flexible in what we look at. So, here’s the drill: below is a list of contemporary texts which are mentioned in the blurb. Choose one and bring your opinions to share with the group. I figure that most of use will be familiar with Buffy et al but it’s always good to return to the source. The list of potentials (yeah, that’s a Buffy joke) is below. Choose wisely …

Buffy the Vampire Slayer, ‘Welcome to the Hellmouth’, Episode 1, Series 1

Twilight (2005) by Stephenie Meyer

Twilight (2008), Directed by Catherine Hardwicke

Dead Until Dark (2001) by Charlaine Harris, Book One of the Sookie Stackhouse Mysteries

True Blood, ‘Strange Love’, Episode 1, Series 1

The Awakening: Volume I (1991) by L. J. Smith, Book One of the Vampire Diaries series

The Vampire Diaries, ‘Pilot’, Episode 1, Series 1

Well this reads as a very generous range of possibilities. I hope you find at least one that you like.

I will post the meeting room once the date comes available to book and then put it on the blog. Hope to see you there.

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