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Reading Extremities in Orra and De Monfort
Diane Long Hoeveler

At the time of their publication, Joanna Baillie‘s dramas were considered to be works of genius in their sustained and powerful fixation on one of the several possible human passions. In their very focus on these intense emotions, however, the plays actually reified the dangers inherent in the extremes of human passion. In other words, by fixing her attention on the passions, Baillie revealed that the emotions she was supposedly focused on often masked other, even more powerful desires. Thus, in Orra fear is the result of the heroines hatred of male dominance, while in De Monfort hatred is shown to be the symptom of incestuous love. But what has not been noticed about Baillie‘s plays is their almost obsessive interest in dead, abjected male bodies. Both plays present a very gothic vision of the indestructible patriarchy, an uncanny phallic power that cannot die, that persistently resurrects and feeds on itself or the legends that it has constructed.

Gothic Studies
Exhumation and the autopsy of talent
William Hughes

low-browed man never portrayed all the workings, passions, and foibles of our natures, nor possessed such a brilliant imagination as our immortal bard’. 35 The signifying forehead, though, is not the unique property of the physiognomist, amateur or professional. The brow's positioning at the junction of face and scalp facilitates its parallel signification in the rather more elaborate pseudoscience of phrenology. The two pseudosciences are, at times, almost congruent not merely in terms of their specific

in The dome of thought
George Combe and the rise of British phrenology
William Hughes

sudden impulse of passion.’ This ‘sudden impulse of passion’, though, may in itself be problematic. If such a passion cannot be confidently associated with an organ that is capable of generating extremes of behaviour, then phrenology is essentially redundant as both a regular science and a reliable tool in jurisprudence. The two phrenologists in attendance upon Thurtell's corpse concur with regard to the comparative lack of development exhibited by the most appropriate organ that might motivate such a ‘passion’, that of destructiveness – originally

in The dome of thought
Martha McGill and Alasdair Raffe

shake the earth … Providence seems, at first view, to have abandoned public affairs to the misrule of human passions’. However, ‘from the midst of this confusion, order is often made to spring’. Violent upheavals roused nations from ‘dangerous lethargy’, drew forth ‘public spirit’, and inspired ‘larger views of national happiness’. 74 Eighteenth-century preachers continued to warn of divine wrath, but they communicated a new sense that peace and harmony were achievable on earth. Enlightenment discourses about providence had an enduring influence in social and

in The supernatural in early modern Scotland
Phrenology in the British Isles
William Hughes

: It is very difficult to find proper terms; those of affection, passion, memory, &c. are not facts, they are only names of modes of the primitive faculties. In like manner, quietness, temperance, &c. only mean the different degrees of activity in the faculty. Passion is the highest degree of activity in any faculty; a man devoted to music, painting, &c. is passionately fond of those arts; and so of all others. Pleasure or the state of being pleased does not indicate the faculty or the activity of the faculty; it is therefore only a mode of activity. A religious man

in The dome of thought
Phrenology in Britain during the first decade of the nineteenth century
William Hughes

materialism within the nascent system. Bojanus's rejection of the charge of materialism is founded upon the contention that ‘the will still remains entire; it is it which ought to counterbalance the action of the organs; and the passions ought to be restrained by morality’. Clearly, no consideration is here given by Gall's interpreter to the less restrained passions of the insane or pathologically obsessive, not indeed is there any acknowledgement that a practitioner who has knowledge of a subject's skull might potentially become a manipulator of the qualities apparently

in The dome of thought
Mesmerism, celebrity practitioners and the schism of 1842–3
William Hughes

The whole performance is redolent of the exaggeration of popular stagecraft, the emotions and passions being delineated through gestures that feel scripted and conventional rather than spontaneous. Though apparently ‘tickled’ by the entranced subject's mimicry of various harmless sounds and foreign words, the ‘respectable’ audience's reaction to this exhibition of theft is not reported. The implications of the latter, though, are worthy of further attention. Even though there is no suggestion that Hall has himself specifically instructed his

in The dome of thought
An afterword
Richard J. Hand

tale of the scientist and his creation, it is a story about bodies and flesh, about heightened emotions and passions, about shameful secrecy and paradigm-changing genius. At the same time, reworkings of Frankenstein can be as downright silly as one might possibly wish: countless sketch shows have ‘hit the ground running’ with instantly recognisable scenarios of mad scientists and their creations or direct parodies through the appropriation of the iconography of Karloff and the Universal Pictures style. The successful and elaborate parody

in Adapting Frankenstein
Gothic and the perverse father of queer enjoyment
Dale Townshend

Geraldine and Christabel herself, while the countless responses, parodies and rewritings that the poem occasioned would variously eradicate, intensify or reformulate the romance’s queer desirings. More recently, postmodern appropriations of the formal features of Gothic romance by, say, Angela Carter in The Passion of the New Eve (1977) or Jeanette Winterson in Sexing the Cherry (1989) would

in Queering the Gothic
Victorian reclamations of a biblical temptress
Angie Blumberg

bravery in politics and war are due to a woman's influence, and are endeavoured to please her will. She adds: Tho’ but the footstool of a royal king, When we betray and trip him to the earth His crown doth roll beneath us. – Horses have not Such power to grace their lords or break their necks As we, for we add passion to our power. They think us gentle, second unto them, And blind them to

in Victorian literary culture and ancient Egypt