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URBAN GOTHIC: Haunted Cities – Spectral Traces

Conference: Urban Gothic: Haunted Cities, Spectral Traces

Saturday, 24th April 2010 –

Dean Walters Building Liverpool John Moores University

THE NORTH GOTHIC NETWORK presents a one-day conference in Liverpool on 24th April 2010, in partnership with Edinburgh Napier University, Liverpool John Moores University and Edge Hill University.

Gothic scholars are increasingly welcoming historicised studies of Gothic and literary criticism examining how Gothic tropes and modes are inflected for a particular time and place. Even more specifically, critics call for studies not only of historicised Gothic, but of localised Gothic.

In a discussion of these recent trends, for example, Roger Luckhurst suggests that Gothic criticism pay fresh attention to the way location functions, for:

‘it is worth recalling that ghosts are held to haunt specific locales, are tied to what late Victorian psychical researchers … termed “phantasmogenetic centres”. This might suggest that the ghosts of London are different from those of Paris, or those of California.’

This conference takes the specificity of urban ‘phantasmogenetic centres’ as an organising principle, aiming to explore particular representations of urban gothic in literature, film, television and graphic novels.

Keynote speakers include Professor Sue Zlosnik (MMU), Dr Ben Highmore (Sussex), as well the illustrator and graphic artist, Gerry Gapinski.


We invite abstracts for 20-minute papers focusing on identifying, untangling or savouring gothic representations of particular cities, both past and present.

Proposals are welcomed on, but not limited to, the following topics:

* Globalised cities, global Gothic
* Urban underworlds: crime and exploitation in urban space
* The labyrinthine city
* Gothic cartographies
* Gothic flâneurs/flâneuses
* Regional cities, regional Gothic
* Nineteenth-century urban Gothic
* The city as prison
* Paranoia in urban environments
* Haunted cities
* Monstrous cities
* Urban vampires
* Urban temporalities and nostalgia
* Vidler’s architecture of the uncanny
* Tortured narrative and tangled streets
* Uncanny repetition in urban space
* Political subversion in urban gothic

For more information, please contact Dr Ben Brabon or Dr Stéphanie Genz at
North Gothic Network

THE NORTH GOTHIC NETWORK is a regional network of the International Gothic Association (IGA). The IGA was established in June 1991, uniting teachers, scholars and students from around the world interested in Gothic culture, fiction, drama, poetry, art and film, from the eighteenth century onwards. Its purpose is to exchange and expand knowledge of and research on the Gothic as widely and effectively as possible.

The North Gothic Network (NGN) builds upon the IGA’s aims and objectives, fostering the exchange of ideas among Gothic scholars from the region through seminars, workshops and conferences.


The CAMBRIDGE CENTRE for the study of WESTERN ESOTERICISM is independent of any academic or esoteric communities, the directors share an interest in the need for a wider dialogue between scholars and practitioners in the field of Western Esotericism and in the establishment of a secular space in which an interdisciplinary network can thrive.. From 2009 CCWE has operated within Lighthouse editions Limited, a small publishing company Directors: Dr Sophia Wellbeloved, Jeremy Cranswick – see


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