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Emily Fergus (English and Humanities)

'Goblinlike, fantastic': Little People and Deep Time at the Fin de Siecle

My thesis offers an alternative reading of the 'Little People' stories of Arthur Machen, as well as of other fin de siecle writing which features dwarfs and the dwarfish. Often identified as founded in degeneration anxieties, I argue that these narratives may be read as somewhat Gothic treatments of the contemporary anthropological theory of Euhemerism, a theory perhaps finding fresh validation in the relatively new research field of geomythology.

Supervisor: Dr Carolyn Burdett

Image: Illustration from MacRitchie's Testimony of Tradition