The undergrounds of The Phantom of the opera

Sublimation and the Gothic in Leroux's novel and its progeny

Research output: Book/ReportBook

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

This is the most comprehensive analytical study ever done of The Phantom of the Opera in its many different versions from the original Gaston Leroux novel to the present day. It proposes answers to the question, 'why do we keep needing this story told and retold in the Western world?' by revealing the history of deep cultural tensions that underlie the novel and each major adaptation. Using extensive historical and textual evidence and drawing on perspectives from several theories of cultural study, this book argues that we need this tale told and reconfigured because it provides us ways to both confront and disguise how we have fashioned our senses of identity in the Western middle class. The Phantom of the Opera - in varying ways over time - turns out like the 'Gothic' tradition it extends, to be deeply connected to Western self-fashioning in the face of conflicted attitudes about class, gender, race, religious beliefs, Freudian psychology, economic and international tensions, and especially the shifting and permeable boundaries between 'high' and 'low' culture. This book should interest all students of the history of Western culture, as well as those especially fascinated by Gothic fiction, opera, musical theatre, and film.

Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages262
ISBN (Electronic)9781137112880
ISBN (Print)9781349634101
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 30 2016

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sublimation
opera
Western world
history
cultural studies
theater
middle class
psychology
present
gender
evidence
economics
Gothic
Sublimation
Opera
student
History

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)

Cite this

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