This book demonstrates that incest was representative of a range of interests crucial to writers of the Gothic, often women or homosexual men who adopted a critical stance in relation to the heteronormative patriarchal world. In repositioning the Gothic, representations of incest are revealed as synonymous with the Gothic as a whole. The book argues that extending the traditional endpoint of the Gothic makes it possible to understand the full range of familial, legal, marital, sexual and class implications associated with the genre's deployment of incest. Gothic authors deploy the generic convention of incest to reveal as inadequate heteronormative ideologies of sexuality and desire in the patriarchal social structure that render its laws and requirements arbitrary. The book examines the various familial ties and incestuous relationships in the Gothic to show how they depict and disrupt contemporary definitions of gender, family and desire. Many of the methodologies adopted in Gothic scholarship and analyses of incest reveal ongoing continuities between their assumptions and those of the very ideologies Gothic authors strove to disrupt through their use of the incest trope. Methodologies such as Freudian psychoanalysis, as Botting argues, can be positioned as a product of Gothic monster-making, showing the effect of Gothic conventions on psychoanalytic theories that are still in wide use today.
the emergence of a genre , 29 July 2015, https://blogs.kent.ac.uk/ladys-magazine/2015/07/29/the-ladys-magazine-and-the-minerva-press/ , accessed 14 October 2016. See also Jennie Batchelor, Jenny DiPlacidi, and Koenraad Claes, ‘Welcome to the Lady's magazine : understanding the emergence of a genre’, The Lady's magazine (1770–1818): understanding the emergence of a genre , 29 October 2014, http://blogs.kent.ac.uk/ladys-magazine/2014/10/ , accessed 18 October 2016; and Jenny Di Placidi, ‘C.D.H. or Catharine Day Haynes: a gothicauthor for the Lady's magazine and
views the threat of incest as an obstruction to
the former marriage and not the latter focuses attention on the
financial motive and reveals the hypocrisy of overlooking incest
restrictions to benefit the patriarchal structure of the family. 75 Making use of the variety
of conceptions of kinship established by social historians when
analysing incest in the Gothic illuminates that Gothicauthors