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LTEN 120A: Eighteenth Century Gothic: Home

Finding Articles

To find articles that critique, interpret, theorize, or provide historical context to the Gothic movement in eighteenth-century British literature, use the MLA International Bibliography   (MLAIB).  Although not all articles indexed in it are available online, each article citation is accompanied by a UC eLinks icon UC eLinks icon that will lead to any available online full text or to the call number of the journal or book the article is in, if the Library owns it in print format.

"Gothic Literature," "Gothic Fiction," Gothic Drama," and "Gothic Poetry" are all approved subject headings in MLAIB. An author's name can also be used as a subject heading. You can combine any of these with keywords such as gender, sex, class, identity, family, state, nationality, etc. to find articles on fairly specific topics.

Another online bibliography of articles, books, and book reviews about British and other English-Language literatures is the Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature (ABELL). Although there is considerable overlap with MLAIB, this is a British-based bibliography and typically indexes more journals and books by small publishers, so it is worth trying as well.


Either before or after reading a scholarly book or biography, you might want to read how other scholars or literary journalists have evaluated it; often book reviews provide information omitted from the book itself, argue for a different conclusion than those the book's author reaches, and/or compare the book to others on the same general subject. The MLAIB does not include citations to book reviews. ABELL, on the other hand, does, but only from the scholarly journals it indexes, not from newspapers or general-interest magazines. 

The Library provides two comprehensive indexes to book reviews, Book Review Digest (divided into separate databases for books published since 1982 and for books published before 1982) and Book Review Index. Book Review Digest includes summaries of the reviews; Book Review Index does not, but on the other hand it indexes more sources. 



Online Encyclopedias, Companions, Dictionaries

The Encyclopedia of Romantic Literature. Edited by Frederick Burwick. Blackwell Publishing, 2012. Articles on "Gothic Novel (Male)," "Gothic Novel (Female)," "Gothic Drama," and other related topics.

The Encyclopedia of the Novel. Edited by Peter Melville Logan. Blackwell Publishing, 2011. This somewhat advanced-level encyclopedia does not have articles on individual novelists or novels. Instead, it has articles on subgenres (e.g. Gothic Novel, Domestic Novel), historical periods, formal elements (e.g. Plot, Character), etc. Type "Gothic" to see main and secondary articles containing this term.

Oxford Encyclopedia of British Literature. Edited by David Scott Kastan. Oxford University Press, 2006. Has a survey article on "The Gothic" and separate articles on Horace Walpole, Ann Radcliffe, "Sensibility," and other related terms. Each article is accompanied by a list of suggested readings.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. This is one of the most revered reference books in the English language, dating to the 1880s, but now continually revised online.  Excellent, fairly lengthy articles on Walpole, Radcliffe, Lewis, Keats, and Coleridge, as well as many of their contemporaries. 

Oxford Reference Online. Simultaneously search over 150 individual dictionaries, companions, and encyclopedias on multiple subjects in the humanities.

Oxford English Dictionary. To find out what words meant to authors and readers in their own time, and how the meaning, spelling, and usage of English words have evolved over the centuries, use this encyclopedia, commonly referred to as the OED.



For More In-Depth Resources

For links to more in-depth resources on British literature in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, see the page for the Long Eighteenth Century, 1660-1836 in my Guide for English Literature Resources

Finding Books

To find what books (printed or ebooks) Geisel Library has on the Gothic literary movement and individual authors associated with it, use our catalog, Roger.  Change the box that says Keyword to General Subject and try some of the following Subject Headings: .

Gothic Literature

English Literature--18th Century--History and Criticism


Vampires in Literature

Monsters in Literature

Castles in Literature

Blood in Literature

For works on individual authors, type their names as subjects. The most relevant books are probably under the sub-heading "Criticism and Interpretation," e.g.:

Walpole, Horace, 1717-1797--Criticism and Interpretation

Radcliffe, Ann Ward, 1764-1823--Criticism and Interpreation

Lewis, M.G. (Matthew Gregory), 1775-1818--Criticism and Interpretation

For reference books on these subjects, add the words "--Dictionaries," "--Encyclopedias," "--Bibliography," "--Bio-Bibliography," etc. at the end of the subject heading.