Detailing the adventures of a supernatural clan of vampires, witches, and assorted monstrosities, Ray Bradbury’s Elliott family stories are a unique component of his extensive literary output. Written between 1946 and 1994, Bradbury eventually quilted the stories together into a novel, From the Dust Returned (2001), making it a creative project that spanned his adult life. Not only do the stories focus on a single familial unit, engaging with overlapping twentieth-century themes of family, identity and belonging, they were also unique in their time, interrogating post-war American ideologies of domestic unity while reinventing and softening gothic horror for the Baby Boomer generation. Centred around diverse interpretations of the Elliott Family stories, this collection of critical essays recovers the Elliotts for academic purposes by exploring how they form a collective gothic mythos while ranging across distinct themes. Essays included discuss the diverse ways in which the Elliott stories pose questions about difference and Otherness in America; engage with issues of gender, sexuality, and adolescence; and interrogate complex discourses surrounding history, identity, community, and the fantasy of family.
Miranda Corcoran is a lecturer in Twenty-First-Century Literature at University College Cork, Ireland. She teaches courses on nineteenth-century American literature, contemporary literature and culture, and adaptation. She also teaches popular modules on science fiction and horror. She is currently working on a monograph focusing on witchcraft and adolescence in American popular culture, and she is a regular contributor to the online magazine Diabolique.
Steve Gronert Ellerhoff holds a Ph.D. in English from Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. He is an author of fiction and criticism, including Post-Jungian Psychology and the Short Stories of Ray Bradbury and Kurt Vonnegut: Golden Apples of the Monkey House (Routledge, 2016) and Mole (Reaktion Books, 2019). With Philip Coleman, he co-edited George Saunders: Critical Essays (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017).