Le Fanu at 200
Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu:
Celebrating 200 Years of Gothic and the Supernatural
Marking the 200th birth anniversary of Irish author Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu (1814-1873), Shamrokon is pleased to announce a Le Fanu programming track at this year's convention.
Known during his lifetime as Dublin’s “Invisible Prince”, Le Fanu played a pivotal role in the development of both the modern crime novel and the dark fantastic.
He is best known for gothic novels such as Uncle Silas and The Wyvern Mystery, as well as his tales of the supernatural, including “The Familiar”, “Schalken the Painter”, and the terrifyingly bleak “Green Tea”. Le Fanu’s ghost stories were praised by M.R. James, E.F. Benson, Dorothy Sayers and Elizabeth Bowen, while his classic vampire tale “Carmilla” bore a profound influence on Dracula, written by fellow Dubliner Bram Stoker.
Shamrokon will join the celebrations with a number of panels and events hosted by international experts paying tribute to the life and works of Dublin’s master of the macabre.
The programme will include the following events.
The Life and Works of Le Fanu
Editor of Le Fanu’s collected supernatural stories Jim Rockhill discusses everything from the life of Le Fanu, his childhood in Limerick and his turn as the “Invisible Prince” of Dublin, to the author’s key works, including “Carmilla”, “Green Tea”, and Uncle Silas.
Le Fanu’s Place in Supernatural Fiction
What makes Le Fanu’s work so important? A panel of experts discuss not only the influences on Le Fanu’s work, but also the resounding influence he had on others: from his proto-occult detective Dr. Hesselius to his influence on Stoker’s Dracula.
Ghost Stories and Gothic Mysteries—Where to Start?
Find out which works by Le Fanu you should read first—classic tales of the supernatural such as “Carmilla” and “Green Tea”, his most famous gothic novel Uncle Silas, or are there some hidden favourites?
Vampire Lovers—Le Fanu and the Silver Screen
Considering Le Fanu’s works and their cinematic counterparts: from Dreyer’s masterpiece Vampyr (1932) and Hammer’s lurid Vampire Lovers (1970), to the BBC’s adaptation of “Schalken the Painter” (1979) and Peter O’Toole’s turn as Uncle Silas in The Dark Angel (1987).
“Dracula vs. Carmilla”
Exploring the connections between the lives of two Irish masters of gothic horror: J.S. Le Fanu and Bram Stoker, and their indelible contributions to vampire literature: “Carmilla” and Dracula.
Actor Robert Lloyd Parry gives a dramatised reading of one of Le Fanu’s best loved, Dublin-based ghost stories.
Le Fanu Tribute Book Launch
The Swan River Press will be launching a commemorative anthology of short stories by modern authors paying tribute to the life and literature of Le Fanu.