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NEW JOURNAL: Gothic Nature: New Directions in Eco-horror and the EcoGothic

deadline for submissions:
April 15, 2018

full name / name of organization:
Gothic Nature: New Directions in Eco-horror and the EcoGothic

contact email:

We are seeking submissions for our new Gothic Nature journal, due out in 2018.

Further to the success of the November 2017 conference Gothic Nature: New Directions in Eco-horror and the EcoGothic, we will be producing a peer-reviewed journal devoted to the same themes.

The editorial board so far includes Dr Elizabeth Parker, Emily Bourke, Professor Simon C. Estok, Professor Andrew Smith, Professor Dawn Keetley, Professor Matthew Wynn Sivils, and Dr Stacy Alaimo. The inaugural issue will also feature an opening essay on eco-horror and the ecoGothic from Dr Tom J. Hillard.


‘Horror is becoming the environmental norm.’ —Sara L. Crosby

Gothic and horror fictions have long functioned as vivid reflections of contemporary cultural fears. Wood argues that horror is ‘the struggle for recognition of all that our society represses or oppresses’, and Newman puts forward the idea that it ‘actively eliminates and exorcises our fears by allowing them to be relegated to the imaginary realm of fiction’. Now, more than ever, the environment has become a locus of those fears for many people, and this conference seeks to investigate the wide range of Gothic- and horror-inflected texts that tackle the darker side of nature.

As we inch ever closer toward an anthropogenic ecological crisis, this type of fiction demands our attention. In 2009, Simon C. Estok highlighted the importance of ‘ecophobia’ in representations of nature, emphasising the need for ecocriticism to acknowledge the ‘irrational and groundless hatred of the natural world’ present in contemporary society. Tom J. Hillard responded to Estok’s call ‘to talk about how fear of the natural world is a definable and recognizable discourse’, suggesting that ‘we need look no further than the rich and varied vein of critical approaches used to investigate fear in literature.’ What happens, he asks, ‘when we bring the critical tools associated with Gothic fiction to bear on writing about nature?’

Gothic Nature seeks to address this question, interrogating the place of non-human nature in horror and the Gothic today, and showcasing the most exciting and innovative research currently being conducted in the field. We are especially interested for our inaugural issue in articles which address ecocritical theory and endeavour to define and discern the distinctions between ‘eco-horror’ and ‘ecoGothic’. We welcome academic articles from a variety of different subject backgrounds, as well as interdisciplinary work.

Subjects may include, but are by no means limited to:

1. Eco-horror and the ecoGothic: theory and distinctions

2. Ecocriticism and horror literature/ media

3. Ecocriticism and Gothic literature/ media

4. Gothic nature/ecophobia

5. Global eco-horror/global ecoGothic

6. Environmental activism and horror/ the Gothic

7. Human nature vs. nonhuman nature

8. Rural Gothic

9. Landscapes of fear

10. Legends of haunted nature/Gothic nature and mythology

11. Monsters in nature/natural spectres

12. Climate change and Gothic nature

13. Environmental apocalypse

14. Animal horror

15. Gothic nature in art through the ages

If you are interested in submitting a piece for our inaugural issue, please send an article of 6-8,000 words (Harvard referencing), along with a brief biography to by April 15th, 2018. Please feel free to contact either Elizabeth Parker ( or Emily Bourke ( with any informal queries you may have.

Please do get in touch, too, if you are interested in serving on the editorial board or contributing to the work on our website.