Rachel Klein's the Moth Diaries: An Uncanny Use of Intertextuality
CitationCashen, Irina. 2019. Rachel Klein's the Moth Diaries: An Uncanny Use of Intertextuality. Master's thesis, Harvard Extension School.
AbstractThis thesis explores the effects of intertextuality, the idea that all literary works are related to one another, by examining Rachel Klein’s 2002 Gothic novel The Moth Diaries. This novel has received little analysis or critical acclaim, and its use of intertextuality has never been noted before in any review. This study examines the ways in which The Moth Diaries borrows from, reimagines, and alludes to many other written works in ways which may alter readers’ interpretations of the book. In particular, The Moth Diaries engages with works such as Sheridan Le Fanu’s Carmilla and Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and with thinkers such as Sigmund Freud and the culture of therapy that has resulted from his work. This thesis will explore the meanings of vampirism that the novel suggests, along with the book’s critique of the anti-Semitism that has accompanied the vampire genre. Additionally, due to the narrator’s intense relationship with reading and writing, this thesis will examine the questions which the novel raises about the power of literature in readers’ lives.
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