What are some gothic conventions/themes for The Bloody Chamber?
The guide to "The Bloody Chamber" gives sound revision type summaries of the major themes in the work. They include:
- Bestial versus spiritual imagery and action
- Gender stereotypes
- The linking of sex and death
- Loss of innocence
Carter makes use of gothic elements such as the setting - a castle on a remote island and the secret room. Women as victims to a powerful perpetrator is also a convention of Gothic characterization. Elements of the mystical - such as the enchanted key - also indicate the Gothic tradition of transcending normal human concepts and understanding. The narrator's "branding" because of her near-fatal curiosity also alludes to the punishment of those who step outside their expected role or code of behaviour.