Two confessions. One: I’m one of those people who like to pigeonhole everything. Always have been. There are boxes all over my house, each one with its own specific contents. I section my books into fiction (ordered alphabetically) and reference (subdivided by subject). My iTunes library is organised fastidiously, using all the sort fields that my friends ignore. The second confession: I’m not a goth. But then if I was I wouldn’t admit to it. Anyway, what does gothic mean?
Gothic is everywhere
The gothic genre flitted into my periphery in my teens and, upon realising that it didn’t necessarily involve Satanism, death metal or noms de plume like ‘RavenRose’, I took a bit of a shine to it. I trawled the Wikipedia page on gothic rock and stuck a load on my iPod, before reading up on gothic architecture and poking around cathedrals. I even had a go at reading Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto on the internet – I didn’t get very far. It seemed to me that to be a goth, you had to listen to gothic music. Hang around gothic buildings reading gothic literature. Writing homework assignments in gothic typeface. I read that there were different categories of goths too – romantic goths, cyber goths, Victorian goths and gothabillies, and you could take online quizzes to find out which you were. I figured I should listen to the music of each in order to cover my bases. Obviously, I had missed the point. Retrospectively, whoever wrote the quiz must have too, unless they had their tongue in deathly-white cheek.Read More