Cat Butts and Gothic Lit.

Hello all!

This past week has been kinda gnarly – more hours at work, no days off, and my cat went ahead and somehow got a giant hole in her ass cheek so it has been a bit of a runaround, to say the least. I am happy to say that Prynne is 100% fine, contrary to our first vet trip during which I was told she was dying of cancer and needed surgery immediately. This was, in reality, not the case at all; the goober cut her butt on something, plain and simple. Besides acting indignant and pouty over being forced into the cone of shame, and the five-act play giving her medicine is, all is well.  (It’s not like she put me into hysterics over her impending demise or anything.)

In other, more related to this blog news — over the past two days I sat down and read “Of One Blood” by Pauline Hopkins and I can say that I enjoyed it immensely. True to the American Gothic tradition this book is rife with issues of bloodlines, heredity, incest, far off places, and ghosts abound. With its vivid and heavy details, troubled women and stifling men it’s like Charlotte Perkins Gilman and Mary Shelly got together, had a baby, and this novel is their glorious love child.


Hopkins, pictured above,  is a lesser known African American author from the Harlem Renaissance and in this novel provides an insightful commentary on black history and pride. The novel follows the analytical and seemingly cold Reuel Briggs as he discovers the importance of being an active part of one’s own life and learns to embrace his heritage. As he travels to far off Ethiopia in search of treasure he uncovers more than gold and thus returns to American in search of revenge instead of riches.

While the book explores mysticism and the supernatural in the physical world it remains grounded and accessible. It is an analytical readers playground— rich in symbolism, literary parallels, and subtle foreshadowing. I was more than impressed with the tone that the story maintained as well as its ability to keep me interested and invested. If I ever had a preconceived notion of what Gilman and Shelly’s literary love child would be, this exceeds my expectations and is something that I didn’t know I wanted until I’d read it.

Well, I suppose that’s it from me for now. Thanks for reading!


3 Comments Add yours

  1. Art Taylor says:

    I’d meant to ask tonight about your cat (though Kathy had warned me that you might be a little emotional about it). I hope all continues to go OK.

    Nice blog post here—and timely (for me) since I’ve just recently taut a Pauline Hopkins story in class. I haven’t read this one, but interested in it. Are you reading it for a course?

    Love the line about Gilman’s and Shelley’s love child. Good work.


    1. Thanks! Yeah, she’s fine just dramatic thankfully.
      And yes I am! I am taking American Gothic with Lockwood and this is one of the two texts that we have to work with for the semester. It’s a really quick read and I highly recommend it. And if you read it then we can talk about it because I’m a huge nerd and love that stuff. So yeah. Have a good rest of your week!


      1. Art Taylor says:

        American Gothic sounds like fun indeed. I’ve not read this one but if I get a chance….
        And glad your cat’s OK. 🙂


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