“He stripped me, gourmand that he was, as if he were stripping the leaves off an artichoke…”

“Til death do us part” carries terrifying significance in some of our most beloved Gothic tales, where feasts are of the flesh, brides are devoured, and bitter tangerines try to warn of impending doom…

From Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre to Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca and Angela Carter’s short story The Bloody Chamber (quoted above), Alessandra Pino will dissect how food and consumption symbolise more than just sustenance in Gothic literature, unveiling the haunting and horror experienced primarily by female characters in the form of marriage and entrapment.

How does food signal a betrayal of trust? How can a meal give away cruel intentions and murderous instincts? Alessandra will discuss how edible imagery in these stories reveals something sinister lurking beneath the surface and hints at danger ahead. Within these pages lurk gluttonous Gothic villains who devour their victims with greed and glee, while seemingly well-mannered romantic “heroes” with something to hide are exposed by the bitter tang of a sour tangerine, or a barely-touched breakfast banquet. Often, the most dangerous people are the ones closest to you…

Alessandra Pino is a PhD candidate at Westminster University, studying anxiety and the edible in Gothic literature. She is currently co-writing A Gothic Cookbook, a celebration of food and drink in some of the genre’s best stories. Her co-author is food, drinks and travel journalist Ella Buchan, who writes for publications including National Geographic Traveller. The cookbook is illustrated by Lee Henry, a graphic designer and artist whose clients include food companies and stalls at London’s Borough Market.

Oct 27th 2021 8:00 pm - 9:30 pm

£5 - £10 & By Donation

These are extraordinary times and the plague has hit some harder than others, tickets are by donation –
if you possibly can £10 is much appreciated, but £2 is also very welcome.
Thank you for your support