Companion Animals in Contemporary Scottish Women's Gothic

Timothy C. Baker* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


In many contemporary Scottish Gothic novels, non-human animals are positioned as others against whom men define themselves, often through acts of violence. In key works of contemporary Scottish Women’s Gothic, however, the relationship is often reversed: kinship or companionship with animals becomes a way of subverting humanist and patriarchal assumptions. Elspeth Barker’s O Caledonia (1991), Ever Dundas’s Goblin (2017), and Alice Thompson’s The Falconer (2008) are used as examples of the way Scottish Women’s Gothic critiques traditional humanist ideals in favour of an emphasis on multispecies storytelling and shared vulnerability. United by a Second World War setting, as well as an emphasis on Gothic tropes and themes, these novels challenge received notions of gender, history, and nation in order to present a more inclusive perspective that focuses on shared vulnerability and inclusion.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGothic Animals: Uncanny Otherness and the Animal With-Out
EditorsMelissa Edmundson Makala, Ruth Heholt
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-34540-2
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-34539-6
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2020

Publication series

NamePalgrave Studies in Animals and Literature
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan, Cham


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