CFP: [General] Gothic Dreams/Gothic Nightmares

full name / name of organization: 
Carol Margaret Davison
contact email:

The following call for papers is for a joint session of the International
Gothic Association and ACCUTE (the Association of Canadian College and
University Teachers of English), to be held during the ACCUTE Conference at
the University of British Columbia, May 31-June 3, 2008.


Since the advent of Horace Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto (1764), numerous
Gothic works have been inspired by dreams and nightmares. This goes some
way towards explaining why many Gothic narratives are oneiric in nature,
symbolically-invested, conspiracy-suffused dreamscapes/nightmare-scapes
that seem to exist at the penumbral crossroads of consciousness and
unconsciousness and centre on an often paranoid subject. In the watershed
movement broadly referred to as the Enlightenment, dreams became, for the
first time in centuries, an object of general interest and debate. The
surging sales of books on dreams, visions, presentiments, and sleepwalking
in the mid- to late-eighteenth century attest to the compelling nature and
significance of “irrational” phenomena in the Age of Reason. Proposals for
individual or collaborative papers are invited on the idea of the Gothic
dreams and nightmares. Possible topics might include (but are not limited

• the changing face and meaning of Gothic dream/nightmare

• inspirational dreams/nightmares and the Gothic

• the Gothic and dream/nightmare-related genres

• narrative strategies and dreams/nightmares

• oneirocriticism: dream theory (medical, psychoanalytic, spiritual,
religious, pseudo-scientific, etc.) and the Gothic (e.g. Thomas Hobbes,
John Locke, David Hartley, Dugald Stewart, Georg Christoph Lichtenberg,
Friedrich August Carus, Ernest Jones, Sigmund Freud, etc.)

• Gothic dreams/nightmares and the visual arts (e.g. Piranesi, Fuseli,
Goya, etc.)

• gender and the Gothic dream/nightmare (e.g. interpreting the female/male

• the drug-/alcohol-induced Gothic dream/nightmare

• Gothic sleepwalkers (e.g. Charles Brockden Brown’s Edgar Huntly; or
Memoirs of a Sleep-Walker, 1799; Bram Stoker’s Dracula, 1897)

• dreams/nightmares in the Age of Reason

• Romantic individualism and Gothic dreams/nightmares

• Gothic dreamscapes/nightmare-scapes and paranoia/conspiracy

• Gothic dreams/nightmares and encounters with Otherness

• Gothic dreams/nightmares on film

• Gothic literature and dream/nightmare manuals (e.g. John Bond’s An Essay
on the Incubus, or Night-mare, 1753)

Please send electronic copies of proposals of approximately 500 words and a
100-word bio by Friday, November 23rd, 2007, to Carol Margaret Davison
( or by snail-mail to:

Dr. Carol Margaret Davison
Department of English Language, Literature, and Creative Writing
University of Windsor
401 Sunset Avenue
Windsor, Ontario
N9B 3P4

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Received on Fri Aug 10 2007 - 10:58:23 EDT

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