Trauma Narratives of Scottish Childhood in Janice Galloway’s Short Stories
Keywords:Scottish literature, Janice Galloway, short story, trauma, childhood
Janice Galloway represents one of the most strikingly original voices in new Scottish fiction, which breaks with the tradition of conventional narratives looking back at the national history and looking up to larger-than-life male heroes. Instead, Galloway writes deftly crafted short stories of everyday life in contemporary settings, finding that the past informs the present and proceeding to explore how the stateless nation’s cultural heritage affects her characters. This paper analyses selected stories from Galloway’s collections Blood (1991) and Where You Find It (1996) from the perspective of trauma criticism, which seems a particularly fitting approach to the author’s often disturbing narratives of violence and abuse. The focus is on child characters and on the ways that historical trauma, as introduced by Sigmund Freud and further refined by Cathy Caruth, is passed down to them. Finally, the paper provides examples from the individual short stories which illustrate how the traumatic experience can be acknowledged, witnessed, and ultimately communicated.
Balaev, Michelle. “Trauma Studies.” In A Companion to Literary Theory, edited by David H. Richter, 360–372. Chichester: Wiley Blackwell, 2018.
Caruth, Cathy. Unclaimed Experience: Trauma, Narrative, and History. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996.
Freud, Sigmund. Beyond the Pleasure Principle. Translated by James Strachey. New York: Norton, 1961.
Freud, Sigmund. Moses and Monotheism. Translated by Katherine Jones. London: Hogarth Press/Institute of Psycho-analysis, 1939.
Galloway, Janice. “Introduction”. In Meantime: Looking Forward to the Millennium, edited by Janice Galloway and Marion Sinclair, 5–6. Edinburgh: Polygon, 1991.
Galloway, Janice. Blood. London: Secker & Warburg, 1991.
Galloway, Janice. Where You Find It. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1996.
Germanà, Monica. Scottish Women’s Gothic and Fantastic Writing. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2013.
Germanà, Monica. “The Sick Body and the Fractured Self.” Gothic Studies 13, no. 2 (2011): 1–8.
Gifford, Douglas. “Contemporary Fiction 2: Seven Writers in Scotland.” In A History of Scottish Women’s Writing, edited by Douglas Gifford and Dorothy McMillan, 604–629. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1997.
Janet, Pierre. Psychological Healing: A Historical and Clinical Study. Translated by Eden Paul and Cedar Paul. New York: Macmillan, 1925.
Jones, Carole. “Burying the Man That Was: Janice Galloway and Gender Disorientation.” In The Edinburgh Companion to Contemporary Scottish Literature, edited by Berthold Schoene, 210–218. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2007.
Maley, Willy. “Onto Plums: Spending ‘A Week with Uncle Felix.’” In Exchanges: Reading Janice Galloway’s Fictions, edited by Linda Jackson, 43–53. Edinburgh: Edinburgh Review, 2004.
March, Cristie. “Interview with Janice Galloway.” Edinburgh Review 101 (1999): 85–98.
McGlynn, Mary M. Narratives of Class in New Irish and Scottish Literature: From Joyce to Kelman, Doyle, Galloway, and McNamee. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2008.
Norquay, Glenda. “Janice Galloway’s Novels: Fraudulent Mooching.” In Contemporary Scottish Women Writers, edited by Aileen Christianson and Alison Lumsden, 131–143. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2000.
Sacido Romero, Jorge. “Unmasking Male Violence in Four Stories by Janice Galloway”. In On the Move: Glancing Backwards to Build a Future in English Studies, edited by Aitor Ibarrola-Armendariz and Jon Ortiz de Urbina Arruabarrena, 347–348. Bilbao: Universidad de Deusto, 2016.
Sage, Victor. “‘The Grail, or the Holy Bloodshed…’: Cruelty, Darkness and the Body in Janice Galloway, Alison Kennedy and Louise Welsh.” Gothic Studies 13, no. 2 (2011): 63–77.
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2022 Ema Jelínková
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.