“Middle-aged, anti-Female single men” and middle-aged robust female vampires in E. F. Benson’s “Spook Tales”

Heholt, Ruth ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6963-6427 (2024) “Middle-aged, anti-Female single men” and middle-aged robust female vampires in E. F. Benson’s “Spook Tales”. In: Masculinity in Literatures and the Arts: Deconstruction/Evolution of Models of Identity,. “Il segno e le lettere”. . LED Milan, Milan Italy. ISBN Unknown (Submitted)

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Abstract / Summary

This chapter looks at three stories featuring “robust” female vampires by the Edwardian writer E. F. Benson. Benson’s male characters are of a type, prevalent as an ideal in this era, to whom politeness (or at least an outward appearance of such) is paramount. Roughness, crudeness, violence against women, are all taboo. This chapter will examine the position that the “gentleman” is placed in through encounters with the egregious and barely controllable figure of the female vampire. It will argue that it is impossible for any gentleman to retain the expected manners, courtesy, calm, or control in the face of the truly monstrous feminine. The men in these tales are torn out of acceptable, controlled masculinity causing it to deconstruct. The veneer of politeness is no defence against female vampires and these Edwardian gentlemen are exposed as violent and ruthless, and in fact, not “polite” at all.

Item Type: Book Section
ISBN: Unknown
Subjects: Writing & Journalism > Literature > English Literature
Writing & Journalism > Literature
Courses by Department: The School of Writing & Journalism > Journalism
Depositing User: Ruth Heholt
Date Deposited: 09 May 2024 13:58
Last Modified: 09 May 2024 13:58
URI: https://repository.falmouth.ac.uk/id/eprint/5504


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