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The Ghostly and the Ghosted in Literature and Film

Spectral Identities

Edited by Lisa B. Kröger and Melanie Anderson

The Ghostly and the Ghosted in Literature and Film: Spectral Identities is a collection of essays expanding the concepts of “ghost” and “haunting” beyond literary tools used to add supernatural flavor to include questions of identity, visibility, memory and trauma, and history. Using a wide scope of texts from varying time periods and cultures, including fiction and film, this collection explores the phenomenon of social ghosts. What does it mean, for example, to be invisible, to be a ghost, particularly when that ghost is representative of a person or group living on the margins of society? Why do specific types of ghosts tend to haunt certain cultures and/or places? What is it about a people’s history that invites these types of hauntings? The essays in this book, like pieces of a puzzle, approach the larger questions from diverse individual perspectives, but, taken together, they offer a richly detailed composite discussion of what it means to be haunted.

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University Press Copublishing Division / University of Delaware Press
Pages: 184Size: 6 1/4 x 9 1/4
978-1-61149-452-5 • Hardback • March 2013 • $69.00 • (£47.95)
978-1-61149-565-2 • Paperback • February 2015 • $39.99 • (£24.95)
978-1-61149-453-2 • eBook • March 2013 • $39.99 • (£24.95)
Lisa Kröger is a freelance writer and teaches academic writing to graduate students at Mississippi State University.

Melanie R. Anderson is an instructional assistant professor of American literature at the University of Mississippi.

Part One: The Gothic and the Ghostly
Chapter One: Haunted Narratives: Women Writing the Ghostly in Early Gothic Fiction
Lisa Kröger
Chapter Two: City of Ghosts: Elizabeth Bowen’s Wartime Stories
Stefania Porcelli
Chapter Three: Those “whose deaths were not remarked:” Ghostly Other Women in Henry James’s The Turn of the Screw, Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper, and Marilynne Robinson’s Housekeeping
Jana M. Tigchelaar
Part Two: Spectral Figures and Spectral Histories
Chapter Four: These Ghosts Will Be Lovers: The “Cultural Haunting” of Class Consciousness in Ian McEwan’s Atonement
Karley K. Adney
Chapter Five: The Spectral Queerness of White Supremacy in Helen Oyeyemi's White Is for Witching
Amy K. King
Chapter Six: In the Spirit of Reconciliation: Migrating Spirits and Australian Postcolonial Multiculturalism in Hoa Pham’s Vixen
Jessica Carniel
Chapter Seven: Haunting Mothers: Alternative Modes of Communication in Geographies of Home and Soledad
Betsy A. Sandlin
Part Three: Spectral Projections
Chapter Eight: Aesthetics of Hauntings as Diasporic Sensibility in Julie Dash’s Daughters of the Dust
Yu-yen Liu
Chapter Nine: Women as Cultural Wound: Korean Horror Cinema and the Imperative of Han
Andrew Hock Soon Ng
Chapter Ten: Interrogating Capitalism, The Specter of Hiroshima, and the Architectural Uncanny in Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s Pulse
Paul Petrovic
About the Contributors

Kröger (academic writing, Mississippi State University) and Anderson (American literature, University of Mississippi) ask: what is it about the spectral that has held popular attention for so long? What does it symbolize for authors and audiences? What is a ghost? Existentially ghosts lie between fact and fiction, between the orbits of believer and nonbeliever, and provide bounteous fodder for storytelling, literature, and film. In 10 chapters the editors and their contributors offer a broad, comparative look at the place of ghosts in literature and film, and they see the ghost as a useful metaphor for death and the uncertainties of life. There are three parts: the Gothic and the ghostly; spectral figures and spectral histories; and spectral projections. This concise and interesting book is for scholars and the intellectually curious.
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