How the settings of Gothic fiction create or contribute to gothic knowledge
The word Goth is used to describe Germanic tribes who ruled over Europe in the medieval era. It also characterizes certain kind of architectural styles mostly found in Europe. In this modern age, however, people who call themselves Goth are characterized by dark and sadistic inclinations in their approach to life. Goth also refers to a type of fiction novel genre. Goth fiction is also referred as Goth horror. These novels are usually set in the past and have an ominous feeling to it.
Goth fiction originated in the mid of 18th century in England. Goth fiction gained much fame right from its early days. The reasons for its early fame were the captivating novels like Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and the works of Edgar Allan Poe. Most interesting thing about these novels was the new introduced settings. Frankenstein was a novel about an eccentric scientist’s odd creation that came into existence as a result of an accident. The settings in these gothic fiction novels consisted of settings that were related to Goth understanding but added to the knowledge of Goth. Settings like castles, atmosphere of mystery and suspense, high and overwrought emotions, the metonymy of gloom and horror, omens, portents and visions, supernatural, an ancient prophecy, women in distress etc added new meaning and understanding into Goth Knowledge. Goth architecture was also depicted in these novels. The Gothic novels added character to the gothic buildings depicted by them. Horror was the most visible aspect displayed in these novels.
As the time passed, these novels have become less gothic. Although the concepts of gothic novel as mysterious stories that disturb the reader remain, most recent works that are depicted as gothic are quite different from the original works that appeared in the beginning. A recent example of such a novel cum movie is Twilight. It has deviated from the original concept of gothic fiction, which was to instill horror and disturb the reader. However, these works have given new direction to Goth knowledge. Perhaps the modern day Goths relate more to novels like Twilight than they do to Frankenstein.
The initiators of Goth provided the basic footing for its theme where as their successors have adapted to the demands of evolving times. They have created new and added meaning to the existing Goth knowledge. Who knows what the future holds for the Goths.