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Title: Devouring the Gothic : food and the Gothic body
Author: Andrews, Elizabeth
ISNI:       0000 0004 2683 4783
Awarding Body: University of Stirling
Current Institution: University of Stirling
Date of Award: 2008
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At the beginnings of the Gothic, in the eighteenth century, there was an anxiety or taboo surrounding consumption and appetite for the Gothic text itself and for the excessive and sensational themes that the Gothic discussed. The female body, becoming a commodity in society, was objectified within the texts and consumed by the villain (both metaphorically and literally) who represented the perils of gluttony and indulgence and the horrors of cannibalistic desire. The female was the object of consumption and thus was denied appetite and was depicted as starved and starving. This also communicated the taboo of female appetite, a taboo that persists and changes within the Gothic as the female assumes the status of subject and the power to devour; she moves from being ethereal to bestial in the nineteenth century. With her renewed hunger, she becomes the consumer, devouring the villain who would eat her alive. The two sections of this study discuss the extremes of appetite and the extremes of bodily representations: starvation and cannibalism.
Supervisor: Byron, Glennis Sponsor: AHRC
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Gothic ; Food ; Body ; Gothic revival (Literature) ; Body, Human, in literature ; Food in literature ; Women in literature ; Cannibalism in literature