Monday, October 28, 2013

Burke and Hare

The execution of William Burke
(Source: Wikipedia)

Dr Alison Younger has published an essay on the notorious Edinburgh grave-robbers and murderers William Burke and William Hare. Alison examines how a tale of two murderers (and essentially two cities) was sensationalised and Gothicised, and the murderers themselves abjected and made monstrous as symptomatic representations of a web of contemporary fears surrounding race, class and the commodification and atomisation of the body (both living and dead). The essay, entitled 'Morbid Anatomy: De'Crypting the Monstrous: Burke and Hare', appears in Border Crossings, a collection of essays edited by Colin Younger (Cambridge Scholars, 2013). The volume also contains a chapter co-written by Alison and Professor John Strachan (Bath Spa University) on the Irish journalist and writer William Maginn.


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