Carter, Margaret L. Books

Specter or Delusion? the Supernatural in Gothic Fiction
1987 0-7734-1984-5
The first full-length study to explore connections among narrative viewpoint, fictional characters' belief or disbelief in the supernatural, and attitudes toward nonmaterial reality in the society to which the author belongs. Themes of uncertainty and madness dominate these works. The protagonist and the implied reader are forced to question the entire spiritual realm and the nature of reality. This study shows how these conflicts mirror cultural attitudes, from the rationalism of the eighteenth century to the skepticism and scientific preoccupations of the nineteenth.