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European Gothic

Module Code: LN305
Module Name: European Gothic
Module Credits: 15

Friday, 3-5pm

Room H202

Tales of Terror

This module aims to challenge Anglo-centric narratives of the Gothic, by putting in the spotlight trans-national and trans-linguistic exchanges between the French, German, and Italian domains in the ‘Golden Age’ of Gothic literature (1764-1830). By focusing on specific case studies of textual translation, adaptation, and manipulation, it innovatively brings together elements of translation theory, history of printed culture and history of the book, Gothic theory, and media studies. In particular, the module aims to strengthening students’ skills as researchers, by encouraging them to make direct fieldwork in a still underdeveloped area of scholarship and to undertake individual research projects assessed for the 50% of the final mark.

In 2017-18, European Gothic will be devoted to the birth and metamorphoses of the vampire myth, from sixteenth-century Greece to nineteenth-century England: by discussing medical and legal texts (Von Schertz's Magia Posthuma, 1704, and Ranft's De masticatione mortuorum in tumulis, 1705), reports on 'actual' incidents occurred in Serbia under the Austrian occupation, urban legends of revolutionary Paris, Romantic poems, treatises on vampirism written by French abbots, and collections of anecdotes of the Napoleonic age, we will explore the ways the vampire slowly migrates from folklore to literature, becoming one of the most iconic figures of modernity.

European Gothic will foresee the participation of internal and external speakers, who will participate to seminar discussion, alongside delivering research seminars for the whole School. The module has been conceived in joint collaboration with the Library, and will foresee a dedicated session with Academic Support Librarians.

The module is available across the School of Modern Languages and Cultures, and does not require students to have language abilities in any specific language.


2,500 word essay (50%), plus an individual research project with a 1,500 word report and commentary (40%) and a 10 minute presentation on their project (10%)