Gothic literature delights readers through its tantalizing combination of suspense, secrecy, the supernatural, and—sometimes—romance. In this course we will trace the development of gothic fiction from its origins in eighteenth-century England to present-day expressions of the macabre on the large and small screens. Students will explore the ways in which frightful stories often reveal the underlying fears and anxieties of an era, from the concerns about reverse colonization in Victorian England to the ways in which slavery and Native American removal haunt the literature of the United States. Readings will include Walpole’s Castle of Otranto, Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Stoker’s Dracula, and short stories by Edgar Allan Poe, Arthur Conan Doyle, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Angela Carter, and Carmen Maria Machado. The course culminates in an examination of the many strains of a more contemporary gothic style in Lynch’s Twin Peaks, Peele’s Get Out, and Childish Gambino’s “This is America.”