Original Research

Imperialism and the abject Gothic double: Jane Goodwin Austin’s ‘After Three Thousand Years’

Allyson Kreuiter
Literator | Vol 41, No 1 | a1697 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v41i1.1697 | © 2020 Allyson Kreuiter | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 23 April 2020 | Published: 05 October 2020

About the author(s)

Allyson Kreuiter, Department of English Studies, Faculty of Arts, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa


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Abstract

Jane Goodwin Austin (1831–1894) published her short story ‘After Three Thousand Years’ in 1868. Austin’s tale is one of the first narratives to deal with a malevolent female mummy and what is known as the mummy’s curse. Her story has received limited critical attention unlike a similar story published by Louisa May Alcott in 1869, ‘Lost in a Pyramid, or The Mummy’s Curse’. This lack of scholarly attention makes Austin’s short story more interesting to the researcher than that of Alcott. In my article, I will perform a close reading of ‘After Three Thousand Years’, examining how the imperialist theme is intertwined with the abject Gothic doubling of the mummy and the female protagonists, which I consider to be central to the plot of Austin’s story.

Keywords

Jane Goodwin Austin; mummies; Imperialism; Gothic; female double; uncanny.

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