Angela Carter talks beauties and beasts with Terry Jones

The influential author Angela Carter died on 16 February 1992.

Despite her early death at the age of 51, Carter forged a reputation as a serious writer – working across fiction, non-fiction, essays and journalism.

However, it was her interpretation of classic fairy tales in the 1979 anthology, The Bloody Chamber, which sealed her reputation as an author. Teasing out the darker, sexualised elements of the original tales, Carter tackled sex, gender, and relationships head-on.

In this clip, Carter discusses her take on Beauty and the Beast – and its erotic undercurrents – with former Monty Python star Terry Jones.

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The Significance of Female Identity Within Gothic Literature

The presentation of female identity is essential to Gothic literature. Presenting women in a particular light can often have a profound effect upon a text, completely altering a reader’s interpretation. In the narrative poetry of John Keats, Angela Carter’s ‘The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories’ and Bram Stoker’s ‘Dracula’, women are presented as objects of desire, maternal figures, supernatural beings and are often defined by their biological roles. But it is the transition between these typecasts that is particularly interesting. By allowing female characters to break free of stereotypical constraints the writer is able to create obscurity and suspense within a plot.

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