Female vampires, masculine anxiety and nature : the ecological Gothic of Sheridan Le Fanu's Carmilla

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dc.contributor.advisor Huff, Joyce L.
dc.contributor.author Vesperry, Lindsey M.
dc.date.accessioned 2014-05-08T19:03:20Z
dc.date.available 2014-05-08T19:03:20Z
dc.date.issued 2014-05-03
dc.identifier.uri http://cardinalscholar.bsu.edu/handle/123456789/198201
dc.description.abstract Sheridan Le Fanu’s novella has been analyzed as a text depicting the masculine anxieties that lie within the heart of England’s patriarchic system. This system relies on the abjection of the natural world in favor of patriarchal culture, which includes the codification of femininity as more natural and a constant threat. The vampire Carmilla, who is a vehicle for the natural world, transgresses the boundaries of Victorian femininity by preying upon young women, and the male characters attempt to reestablish the patriarchal system by staking her. The “unnatural” Carmilla certainly stands as a challenge against a male-dominated civilization by her mere existence. Scholars such as Jarlath Killeen, Angela Michelis, and Sally Harris explore the abjection of the maternal/feminine other, and Joseph Andriano examines Carmilla’s actions as unsuppressed human nature that ultimately threatens the stability of patriarchal systems. My analysis builds upon their work, but focuses instead on the post-Darwinian anxiety within the novella: is Carmilla really an unnatural being, or does the patriarchic order deem her unnatural due to their fear of the female predator? Due to the rising popularity of Darwinism, the English were beginning to question man’s dominance over nature, fearing that men were not sitting comfortably at the top of the food chain. My project analyzes the growing anxiety regarding nature along with the fear of the monstrous feminine in the text. I will approach “Carmilla” with a psychoanalytic and ecocritical framework, and draw attention to the white male’s uncertainty of his dominance over nature and women. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Department of English
dc.subject.lcsh Vampires in literature.
dc.subject.lcsh Women in literature.
dc.subject.lcsh Male domination (Social structure)
dc.subject.lcsh Nature in literature.
dc.subject.other Le Fanu, Joseph Sheridan, 1814-1873. Carmilla.
dc.title Female vampires, masculine anxiety and nature : the ecological Gothic of Sheridan Le Fanu's Carmilla en_US
dc.type Research paper (M.A.), 3 hours.
dc.description.degree Thesis (M.A.) en_US
dc.identifier.cardcat-url http://liblink.bsu.edu/catkey/1768386

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  • Research Papers [5068]
    Research papers submitted to the Graduate School by Ball State University master's degree candidates in partial fulfillment of degree requirements.

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