We are learning to: Explain the significance of Gothic Motifs in the stories of A Bloody Chamber. Discuss the author’s purposes. Initial Focus: ‘The Snow Child’ Manifestation of Death Symbolism •Snow •Blood •Raven Icon of Gothic Literature Epitomizsd in Edgar Allen Poe’s ‘The Raven’ (1845). Intertextuality Lady Macbeth ‘The raven himself is hoarse that croaks the fatal entrance of Duncan under my battlements’ The Countess •A striking figure •‘glittering’, ‘shining’ Dressed in: •‘Black fur with a touch of scarlet’ •‘Pelts of black foxes’ In creating the character of Asaji (Lady Macbeth) – Kurosawa ‘showed her a mask of the Noh, named Shakumi. This was the mask of beauty no longer young, and represented the image of a woman about to go mad. Symbolism Clothing and Jewellery Manifest the transference of affection from older to younger women. What is Carter suggesting about the way that culture constructs females? Genre Convention Deception – ‘pricking of thorn’. Snow White, Sleeping Beauty Purity? (‘Snow’) Sexuality? Blood? Objectivity? Power? The Count •Cold-blooded killer •His desire is ‘as red as blood’ The Real Villain? •Unpunished and Unscathed Imagery Graphic Necrophilia “Carter seems to suggest here that men would rather indulge themselves with dead fantasies of sexual control (no matter how taboo). "Gothic texts celebrate the victory of emotion over reason". To what extent do you agree? ‘The Snow Child’ Carter conveys the victory of emotion over reason, as many of her characters allow their sexual desires to govern their actions. In 'The Snow Child', the Count's emotions for "the child of his desire" overpower his reason (or his wife's hatred for the girl. Carter uses the form of the story to show this. Although 'The Snow Child' is written with an omniscient narrator, the narrator voice aligns itself with the character of the Count. Therefore, the disjointed form and sentence structure, such as the use of semicolons to break up the flow of the lines - "the girl furred and booted; the Count felt sorry for his wife" - seem to reflect the Count's almost erratic and irrational sexual excitement of being able to "thrust his virile member into the dead girl". Gothic texts celebrate the victory of emotion over reason’ to what extent do you agree? The child’s emotions are sidelined as she is objectified by The Count as his emotions have taken over reason. Carter uses dark themes that don’t just celebrate victory of emotion over reason. Instead, the text appears to condemn the victory of emotions like sexual desire over reason in the corruption of innocence of children, ‘thrust his extremely virile member into dead girl’. This startling line appals the reader as it present’s issues of paedophilia and necrophilia that threaten all reason of society. Carter further highlights these neglected morals in ‘The Bloody Chamber’, in the Marquis’ desire of deflowering young virgins ‘the child with her sticklike limbs, naked’, Cater specifically indicates it is the males emotion that is prioritised despite the females own emotions of terror ‘I shivered to think of that’, a contrast that provokes the readers thoughts in reason of this hierarchy and stimulates debate from a feminists viewpoint. The Gothic setting around ‘the snow child’ creates a romantic yet haunting landscape of a cold winter’s day, ‘midwinter- invincible, immaculate’. The opening line presents the themes of innocence and virginity that are corrupted by the Count’s power that is inevitable, again presenting a hierarchy of males over females. This therefore questions the victory of emotion over reason and society’s debatable morals. “I’d always been fond of Poe, and Hoffman – Gothic tales, cruel tales, tales of wonder, tales of terror, fabulous narratives that deal directly with the imagery of the unconscious Mirrors; The externalised self; Forsaken castles; Haunted Forests; Forbidden Sexual Objects” Angela Carter (1974) What are Carter’s purposes in ‘The Snow Child’? Gothic texts expose humanity’s excessive cruelty. To what extent do you agree? Gothic imagery is most effective when it is subtly disturbing. To what extent do you agree?