The essays in this book demonstrate the importance of translation and European writing in the development of the Gothic novel. Cross-cultural exchanges occurred with the translation of novels by English writers into French. The book first situates works by British writers and American writers within a European context and legacy. Next, it offers readings of less-known works by Gothic authors. The book introduces the reader to a range of neglected, albeit influential, European Gothic texts which originated in Russian, Spanish, French and German. It argues that the level of ideological manipulation, which occurred as texts were translated, mistranslated, appropriated, misappropriated, altered and adapted from one language to another, was so considerable and so systematic that generic mutations were occasioned. The book suggests that Matthew Lewis's The Monk offers a few models of femininity, all deriving from and intended to disrupt, previous literary representations. It focuses on the automatic and the systematic in Charles Maturin's work in relation to Denis Diderot's contemporary philosophical conceptualizations of consciousness and identity. Gothic treacheries are dealt with through Samuel Coleridge's analysis of misappropriation of Friedrich Schiller's Die Rauber. The book also discusses the representations of ritual violence, as sanctioned by the Catholic Church, in English and Spanish pictorial and literary texts between 1796 and 1834. It talks about the Arabesque narrative technique of embedding tales within tales to create a maze in which even the storyteller becomes lost, reflecting the Eastern notion that the created is more important than the creator.
, representation or censorship is present as an
underlying topic in nearly all the essays.
The volume’s opening chapter, Terry Hale’s
‘Translation in distress: culturalmisappropriation and the
construction of the Gothic’, takes this topic as its main focus.
Hale’s contribution is of crucial significancesince it argues,
somewhat contentiously perhaps, that ‘the Gothic novel was not
On the liberality of Cohen’s translation,
see Terry Hale, ‘Translation in distress: culturalmisappropriation and the construction of the Gothic’, in
Horner (ed.), European Gothic , pp. 28–31.
For the argument that de Fos’s translation
differs markedly from Cohen’s and ‘consist[s] almost
these male scholars’ adulation of the conquering male
warriors and their rightful suppression of the purported matriarchies (Christ 1991
; Goodison and Morris 1998: 7–21 ) .There is also no reference to any historical
studies of the period concerned by prominent Indian women scholars (e.g., Bagchi
1995; Chakravarti 1989; Roy 1999). Finally, there is no mention of me work of
post-colonial scholarship regarding the complexity involved in culturalmisappropriations of traditional interpretations and cultural ideals of other
peoples – especially with regard to women (e
Regina Maria Roche, the Minerva Press, and the bibliographic spread of Irish gothic fiction
Ibid . López Santos's term is ‘transferencia génerica’.
Terry Hale, ‘Translation in distress: culturalmisappropriation and the construction of the gothic’, in Avril Horner (ed.), European gothic: a spirited exchange 1760–1960 (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002), pp. 17