• The Intrusive Supernatural: Disruptions to Order in Nineteenth-Century Society

      Moss, Ethan J. (University of Chester, 2018-11-28)
      The Nineteenth Century was an era of frequent change, making Victorian identity increasingly difficult to identify as the divisions in society splintered the various forms of religious, political and social beliefs of the British public. Within the shadows of all these changes lurked a frequent motif of supernatural intrusion, inserting some form of superstitious element into the multiple aspects of Victorian living. This additional supernatural attribute contributed to the convoluted nature of Victorian existence, destabilising the realities and the perceptions of the social order through a paradoxical age of both rationalism and superstition. This work will aim to identify the uses of the intrusive supernatural concept in nineteenth-century literature and culture, as well as the consequences that follow its incorporation. The essay will establish the habits of the intrusive supernatural and determine whether it exists as a product or cause of the changes to nineteenth-century life. Subsequently the essay shall seek to explore the relationship between the supernatural and disruptions to the supposed natural order of Victorian society. The research into this subject will involve the exploration of both metaphorical and literary uses of the supernatural, as well as the genuine attempts to confront supernatural phenomena in Victorian culture.