Virtual Course | Gothic Awakenings with The Ghoul Guides [in progress]

Date / Time

  • August 11, 2021
    6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
  • September 8, 2021
    6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
  • October 13, 2021
    6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
  • November 10, 2021
    6:30 pm - 8:30 pm



  • Tuition for this course is $200.
  • Rosenbach members receive a 10% discount on tuition.
  • Not a member? We invite you to join upon registration. Click here for more information about membership.
  • This course is limited to participants who are 17 years of age or older.
  • Two complimentary tickets to visit The Rosenbach are included with your paid registration for this virtual course. You will receive the discount code in your email confirmation and tickets can be booked here. Please check your spam folder for your email confirmation and contact us at [email protected] with any questions.
  • Before the first meeting, The Rosenbach will send the Zoom link for course meetings. 



Course Description

Ruined castles, stormy nights, and mysterious strangers: the hallmarks of the Gothic are instantly recognizable with representation decades of popular film, television, and literature. But where, or rather how, did the Gothic originate? Beginning with Horace Walpole’s foundational Gothic novel The Castle of Otranto (1764) this course will look at what first gave rise to Gothic literature in the eighteenth century. We’ll look back at the chivalric romances of the medieval period, contrasted by the rationality of the Age of Enlightenment, to explore how the Gothic genre first came to be. Each month will focus on a different early Gothic text, from the sentimental to the salacious. We’ll be discovering how key conventions such as terror and the Sublime came into being, and how the Gothic canon was shaped in response to events such as the French Revolution. A genre capable of being simultaneously campy and creepy, we’ll be dipping into the some of the Gothic’s most excessive and entertaining moments. As this series will be picking up at beginning of the Gothic’s long history of terror and wonder, it’s ideal for both newcomers and lifelong fans.


Syllabus for Gothic Awakenings with The Ghoul Guides

About the instructors

Dr. Lauren Nixon was awarded her PhD from the University of Sheffield in 2020, where she was co-organizer of Sheffield Gothic for six years. Lauren’s thesis project focused on the representations of war and military masculinity in late eighteenth century Gothic fiction, exploring the interconnections between conflict, gender, and nationality during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. Although an absolute scaredy cat and really bad with horror, Lauren’s interest in the Gothic’s ongoing engagement with war crosses into contemporary texts too: Lauren was the co-founder of Gaming the Gothic and has presented work on film, television, video games, and Kpop. In addition to her research Lauren works frequently in outreach education, delivering workshops and masterclasses for GCSE and ALevel students as well as lectures and programs for public engagement. In a previous life, Lauren worked in museums and has written on the life and works of Jane Austen. Rumor has it she is a renegade Austen scholar, but these reports are currently unconfirmed.

Mary Going is a research associate at the University of Sheffield working with Dr. Maisha Wester exploring the ways that Gothic fiction influences discussions of race. Her own research focuses on constructions of Jewishness as well as the intersection of religion and the Gothic, and she is co-lead of the Gothic Bible project which hosted a ‘Buffy and the Bible’ conference in 2019 – complete with an evening Buffy singalong. Her publications include a chapter on Jewish vampires in Horror and Religion (UWP, 2019), an article on witches, Jewish persecution, and sexual violence in Ivanhoe (in Bible and Critical Theory, 2019), and a chapter exploring Supernatural and police procedurals (McFarland, 2021). She is also the current Web Officer for the International Gothic Association.


About Rosenbach Courses

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