41e3-YPBCcL._SS500_Daniel Robinson, Professor of English, has just published an essay in a new book Transnational Gothic: Literary and Social Exchanges in the Long Nineteenth Century, edited by Monika Elbert and Bridget M. Marshall. Professor Robinson’s article, “Gothic Prosody: Monkish Perversity and the Poetics of Weird Form,” examines the way Romantic-period poets such as Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Edgar Allan Poe invented unique stanzas and meters for poems that involve horror or the supernatural. Poems in “weird form” include Coleridge’s “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” and Poe’s “The Raven.” Professor Robinson’s punning subtitle, “monkish perversity,” refers to writer M. G. “Monk” Lewis whose best-selling 1796 Gothic novel The Monk–a lurid tale of ghosts, rape, incest, and Satanism set during the Spanish Inquisition–includes the interpolated ballad “Alonzo the Brave,” which became popular on its own and established a model for Gothic poetry and what Professor Robinson calls “the poetics of weird form.”

Elbert and Marshall’s collection looks at Gothic literature that transcends national boundaries and, according to the publisher’s description, “seeks to deepen our understanding of the Gothic as not merely a national but a global aesthetic.” Most of the essays, though, examine transatlantic connections–such as the British and American poets in Professor Robinson’s essay–and offer new readings of such other writers as Elizabeth Gaskell, Theodore Dreiser, Louisa May Alcott, Rudyard Kipling, and Bram Stoker.

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