11. New England Gothic

  1. Charles L. Crow
  1. Faye Ringel

Published Online: 13 SEP 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118608395.ch11

A Companion to American Gothic

A Companion to American Gothic

How to Cite

Ringel, F. (2013) New England Gothic, in A Companion to American Gothic (ed C. L. Crow), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118608395.ch11

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 13 SEP 2013
  2. Published Print: 25 NOV 2013

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470671870

Online ISBN: 9781118608395



  • H.P. Lovecraft;
  • Nathaniel Hawthorne;
  • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow;
  • John Greenleaf Whittier;
  • Cotton Mather;
  • Charlotte Perkins Gilman;
  • Shirley Jackson;
  • Salem witchcraft;
  • Stephen King;
  • New England vampires


New England Gothic reflects in literature and life the guilty secrets and unwholesome traditions of New England's history. It encompasses female tradition of madwomen in attics and spinsters immured in dying villages found in Charlotte Perkins Gilman and Shirley Jackson. The male tradition of authors from Cotton Mather, John Greenleaf Whittier and Nathaniel Hawthorne to H.P. Lovecraft and Stephen King transformed New England's supernatural history and legends into Gothic narratives. European traditions of the monstrous flourished along with narratives of Puritan hypocrisy, inbred families, and generational hauntings. New England Gothic combines nostalgia for the Middle Ages with the stronger belief that from the past comes horror and evil.