cover of bookProfessor Carol Davison has edited a collection of essays on the subject of gothic dreams and nightmares.

Gothic subliminal subject of essay collection

Publishing her 10th book wasn’t quite a nightmare for Carol Davison, but it wasn’t a dream either.

A professor in the Department of Interdisciplinary and Critical Studies, she has edited Gothic Dreams and Nightmares, a collection of essays ranging across more than two centuries of literature, the visual arts, and 20th- and 21st-century visual media.

“I experienced several major bumps on the road as I edited this interdisciplinary study over several COVID-challenged years, and I am thankful to the 12 international contributors for their incredible expertise and patience,” says Dr. Davison. “This study seeks to push the boundaries of the field by reconsidering the vastly under-theorized role of the subliminal in the gothic since its inception in the 18th century.”

The authors consider their subject in various national, cultural, and socio-historical contexts, engaging with questions of philosophy, morality, rationality, consciousness, and creativity.

The book will enjoy a North American launch in late July at the 17th biannual International Gothic Association conference in Halifax, where Davison will also present a paper on the subject of her next edited collection, eugenics gothic, and serve as the judge for two book prizes awarded during the event.

Davison is a scholar of gothic and Victorian literature, African American literature, and women’s writing, known for her work in thanatology — the scientific study of death and the losses brought about as a result — and cultural teratology, compound work that is made up of four distinct works.

She has received accolades for her edited collections and publications, including the Allan Lloyd Smith Prize and the Lord Ruthven Assembly Award.

During Davison’s upcoming sabbatical, she will continue editing her Anthem Studies in Gothic Literature Series; writing her 11th book, a monograph contracted by Manchester University Press entitled Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights and the Gothic; and working as a consulting scholar with Theatre Dybbuk out of Los Angeles as it develops its next project. She will present a keynote address at the conference “Writing Angst: the Gothic/Schaueliteratur in Scotland and Germany from 1800 until Today” held at the University of Götingen, Germany, in early September.

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