Chapter

Secrecy, Silence, and Anxiety: Gothic Narratology and the Waverley Novels

Fiona Robertson

in Legitimate Histories

Published in print April 1994 | ISBN: 9780198112242
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191670725 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198112242.003.0005

Series: Oxford English Monographs

Secrecy, Silence, and Anxiety: Gothic Narratology and the Waverley Novels

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This chapter examines Scott's techniques of secrecy and suggestion in The Pirate, Rob Roy, and Peveril of the Peak, arguing that Scott draws on his readers' familiarity with a literature of terror while allowing them, if they choose, to categorize it as literary and therefore secondary to the main purposes (moral and political) of his art. It also argues for a strategic and self-aware use of Gothic conventions, which are not to be equated either technically or psychologically with anything ‘repressed’ by the ‘dominant’ aesthetic of these novels.

Keywords: Walter Scott; The Pirate; Rob Roy; Peveril of the Peak; terror; Gothic conventions

Chapter.  13799 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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