Nick Groom ©Chris Chapman

Books by Nick Groom

Nick Groom is Professor in English at the University of Exeter and is known in the media as the ‘Prof. of Goth’. He has published widely for both academic and popular readerships, and among his many books are The Forger’s Shadow (2002), The Union Jack (2006, rev. edn 2017), The Gothic: A Very Short Introduction (2012), The Seasons: A Celebration of the English Year (2014), and editions of a variety of eighteenth-century texts, from crime writing to Shakespeare. He has edited Horace Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto (2014), Matthew Lewis’s The Monk (2016), Ann Radcliffe’s The Italian (2017), and Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (2018) for Oxford World’s Classics. His next book is The Vampire: A New History, which will be published this autumn by Yale University Press.

Q: As you describe in your Very Short Introduction, the Gothic is obsessed with the Catholic past—as we can see in Matthew Lewis’s The Monk, and Ann Radcliffe’s The Italian. How did English politics square its obsession with the Catholic past and its creation of a new Whig identity in the Gothic?

A: Ann Radcliffe puts her finger on that in her essay ‘On the Supernatural in Poetry’, published posthumously in 1826. In this essay, she suggests that all the ghosts in the recent English literary tradition have their origin in the ghost of Hamlet’s father.

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