Aleph
Volume 7, Numéro 3, Pages 257-268

Thé Cultural And Linguistic Impact Of Gothic Literature On The Identity Of Algerian Teenagers: A Metamorphosis.

Authors : Said Houari Amel .

Abstract

The last decade has witnessed an increasing interest in Gothic fiction among Algerian teenagers. This paper attempts to explain why fear has become a dominant mode of enjoyment in art and literature and demonstrate the cultural and linguistic impact of Harry Potter series on Algerian teenagers’ identity. Considering the cultural and historical specificities of Algeria, the paper first addresses the traumatic influence of Algeria’s civil war on the growing popularity of gothic fiction. Entrapped by the circumstances of history, teenagers are attracted by Gothic stories as a means of coping with trauma and a site of reflection of the tensions, fears and aspirations of the age. The paper then investigates how this interest affected the cultural and linguistic identity of Algerian teenagers. On the cultural level, Harry Potter series addresses issues of character development, family relations, and religious doubts. Using a psychoanalytical approach, the paper examines the impact of the uncanny on the world view of Algerian teenagers. Moreover, the frightening and funny nature of Harry Potter series led to a shift in the perception of monsters from dread to admiration. This change in aesthetic values is reflected in the presence of Gothic elements in teenagers’ clothes and jewellery. On the linguistic level, the paper correlates the popularity of Gothic narratives and the language of violence in teenagers’ conversational exchange.

Keywords

Gothic Fiction ; Algerian Literature ; Identity ; Civil War