Shani Mootoo's Cereus Blooms at Night: "Life Refusing to End" and the Transformative Gothic

Jameela Dallis
PhD Candidate
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Shani Mootoo's Cereus Blooms at Night: "Life Refusing to End" and the Transformative Gothic

In her talk, Dallis examines Shani Mootoo’s1996 daring, disturbing debut novel, Cereus Blooms at Night and its use of the Gothic mode’s violence, its decay, and its tangled overgrown gardens to provide the psychological and material space of transformation through the revision and rehabilitation of these feared and maligned Gothic aesthetics that ultimately provide a haven for the novel’s protagonist, Mala Ramchandin.

Thursday, November 14th ~ 4:00pm ~ Toy Lounge, Dey Hall

Jameela F. Dallis, Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is William Neal Reynolds Fellow in the Royster Society of Fellows. She is the Managing Editor of The Southern Literary Journal. Her dissertation project is entitled Haunted Narratives: The Afterlife of Gothic Aesthetics in Late Contemporary U.S. and Caribbean Fiction. Her essay, “‘Life Refusing to End’: The Transformative Gothic in Shani Mootoo’s Cereus Blooms at Night is forthcoming in Undead Souths: Beyond the Gothic (LSU Press). A second essay, "Through the Eyes of the Monster: Angela Carter’s ‘The Lady of the House of Love’” is forthcoming in Shock and Horror: A New Look at the Gothic Monster (McFarland Press).

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