Fantastic and Gothic readings of Mansfield’s short stories present us with a covert, darker world, alongside seemingly familiar actions and events
This volume investigates an unexpectedly rich vein of literary gothic motifs and tropes found within Mansfield’s modernist, experimental prose. The essays investigate her development of the fairytale in several stories discloses how the ‘Cinderella’ story underpins ‘Her First Ball’, how ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ lurks beneath ‘The Little Governess’, and how the figure of the changeling inhabits ‘A Suburban Fairy Tale’. Mansfield’s explorations of the conscious and unconscious mind are elucidated through a discussion of Freud’s theory of the uncanny and the unsettling effects of language in Mansfield’s In A German Pension stories. Finally, the term ‘charm’ is revealed as spanning the two extremes of the fantastic and the ordinary which combine in Mansfield’s evocations of the enchantment of domestic interiors.
About the Author
Gerri Kimber, Visiting Professor in the Department of English at the University of Northampton, is co-editor of the annual yearbook Katherine Mansfield Studies, and Chair of the Katherine Mansfield Society. She is the deviser and Series Editor of the four-volume Edinburgh Edition of the Collected Works of Katherine Mansfield and the author of Katherine Mansfield: The View from France, and A Literary Modernist: Katherine Mansfield and the Art of the Short Story.