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Antarctic Gothic: The Legacy of Poe and Lovecraft
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Language, Literature and Intercultural Studies. (KuFo)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6160-7768
2014 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This paper argues that when it comes to describing the tradition of speculative writing of the Antarctic, two authors loom large over subsequent productions: Edgar Allan Poe and H. P. Lovecraft. Poe was first to infuse mystery into the Antarctic. Pym and “MS Found in a Bottle,” fashion the Antarctic as a mysterious locale beyond the known. This is picked up a century later in Lovecraft’s At the Mountains of Madness, writing in the same imaginative domain as Poe, extending his influence on Antarctic writing into present days. However, Lovecraft takes Poe’s impulse further, envisioning remnants of an alien civilization beneath the ice. Based on these impulses a tradition of Antarctic fiction has developed, where the premise is that beneath the icy surface lies something threatening that will surface. A seminal text in this respect is Campbell’s “Who Goes There?” (1938), which has been filmed twice: as The Thing from Another World (1951) and The Thing (1982), with a prequel also called The Thing (2011). Other movies have explored the Antarctic as mystery as well: X-Files: Fight the Future (1998), Alien Hunter (2003), and AVP: Alien vs. Predator (2004). In literature, Poe’s Antarctic tradition is kept alive with Johnson’s Pym (2011), but also in science-fiction with Curran’s The Hive-series (2005-), Grace’s Polar Quest (2003), and Beck’s Beneath the Dark Ice (2011). These have continued the use the motif of buried Antarctic secrets in Poe and Lovecraft’s vein, proving that the region is every bit as mythopoeic as ever.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014.
Keywords [en]
Gothic, uncanny, geography, Antarctica, Edgar Allan Poe, H.P. Lovecraft
National Category
Humanities
Research subject
English
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-41123OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-41123DiVA, id: diva2:914092
Conference
Gothic and Uncanny Explorations, Karlstad, Sweden, 10-12 September 2014
Available from: 2016-03-23 Created: 2016-03-23 Last updated: 2017-03-01Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
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  • asciidoc
  • rtf