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Night Visitors: The Rise and Fall of the English Ghost Story
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Night Visitors: The Rise and Fall of the English Ghost Story

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  19 ratings  ·  5 reviews
Unknown Binding, 238 pages
Published August 29th 2011 by Faber & Faber (first published May 1977)
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Average rating 3.84  · 
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Murray Ewing
Mar 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
Published in 1977, Briggs’s study of the English ghost story starts with something of a misstep. Blurring the boundaries by treating the term ghost story ‘with something of the latitude that characterises the general usage, since it can denote not only stories about ghosts, but about possession and demonic bargains, spirits other than those of the dead, including ghouls, vampires, werewolves’, Briggs goes on to declare the ghost story a dead form: ‘a vehicle for nostalgia, a formulaic exercise c ...more
Martine Bailey
Oct 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I loved this perceptive analysis of the history of the ghost story, not only for its insights into lots of my favourite chillers, but as another reviewer says, it offers huge encouragement to get onto Project Gutenberg and seek out long forgotten examples of the ghost story. In some ways this is a developmental history of the genre, from the re-tellings of folk tales of Stevenson and Scott, through the fashions for decadence and hallucinogenics, to the restrained psychological tales of the 20th ...more
Ben Lovegrove
Jun 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I am one of the few lucky people to own this out of print book which is extremely rare and expensive to obtain. It is the definitive work on the English ghost story and is surprisingly readable (it starts with a reference to the popular television programme Doctor Who). Julia Briggs appears in interviews on the extras of a BBC DVD of M R James' Casting the Runes - a fascinating documentary worth seeking out even if you can't get this book. It really deserves a reprint though.
Quirkyreader
Feb 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This was a wonderful guide book to the English ghost story.

I was telling one of my friends while reading this book I was going download crazy.

When I was younger it was hard to find many of the authors listed in this book. Now that many of the stories are in the public domain, I can finally read some of them.

I read this book on a reccomendation from a goodreads friend, and I'm very glad that I read the book.

I have found a whole new group of authors to look for once again. The main one is F. W. Ha
...more
Mengxing Fu
Nov 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
Apparently her favorites are Henry James and Le Fanu.
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Julia Briggs was a writer and critic of great talents, a gifted scholar and a profoundly generous teacher who pioneered the study of children's literature and of women's writing in universities. Deeply humanist in outlook, she had an abiding belief in the value of literary study and in the power of education to transform lives.

Julia Ballam grew up in London. Her father, Harry, worked in advertisin
...more

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