Penny Dreadful; Gothic Reimagining and Neo-Victorianism in Modern Television

deadline for submissions: 
May 15, 2017
full name / name of organization: 
J. Greenaway/ S. Reid
contact email: 

Penny Dreadful (2014-2016) has become one of the most critical well-regarded shows of the post-millennial Gothic television revival, drawing explicitly on classic tropes, texts and characters throughout its three-season run. However, despite the show’s critical success and cult following, a substantive academic examination of the show has yet to be undertaken.


This edited collection seeks to address the current lack within Gothic studies scholarship, and situate Penny Dreadful as a key contemporary Gothic television text. This collection will seek to trace the link between the continued expansion of Gothic television, alongside the popular engagement with Neo-Victorianism.  In addition, the collection seeks to examine notions around the aesthetic importance of contemporary Gothic that become particularly prominent against the narrative re-imaginings that occur within Penny Dreadful.  This collection explores exactly where Gothic resides within this reflexive, hybridized and intertextual work; in the bodies, the stories, the history, the styling, or somewhere else entirely? 


Possible contributions could include, but are no means limited to the following: 

-          Gothic adaptation and/or appropriation?

-          Pastiche and parody and Gothic aesthetics

-          ‘Global Gothic’ in the sense of its commercialisation

-          Neo-Victorianism (styling, politics, economics); as well as explorations of the impact of ‘historicizing’ Gothic

-          Representation of gender within the text, specifically female monstrosity

-          The Post/Colonial context, as well racialized characterisation and presentation

-          The reworking/restyling of monsters in contemporary Gothic

-          Consideration of a ‘Romance’ aesthetic and how this alters conceptions of ‘Gothic’ texts and the influence of ‘romantic’ themes/styles in contemporary Gothic


What the proposal should include:

An extended abstract of 500 words (for a 6,000-word chapter) including a proposed chapter title, a clear theoretical approach and reference to some relevant sources.

Please also provide your contact information, institutional affiliation, and a short biography.

Abstracts should be sent as a word document attachment to or  by no later than May 15th 2017 with the subject line, “Penny Dreadful Abstract Submission.”