Visions of an Unseen World
This book describes the haunting of eighteenth-century England. It is the first in-depth study of the production, circulation and consumption of English ghost stories during the Age of Reason. This period saw the establishment of the ghost story as a literary genre. Handley combines close textual analysis with a broad conception of historical change. She examines a variety of mediums: ballads and chapbooks, newspapers, sermons, medical treatises and scientific journals, novels and plays. She relates the telling of ghost stories to wider changes associated with the Enlightenment, arguing that they played a key role in battles against atheism, republicanism, material excess and secularisation.
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