restricted access Eating at the Empire Table: Cormac Mccarthy's The Road and the Anglo-Irish Gothic


Images of consumption run throughout Cormac McCarthy's The Road, from evocations of a fossil fuel-driven economy to cannibalism. Taken together, grotesque and gothic images of consumption expose the connection between power brokerage and overconsumption or improper consumption of resources. Examining central thematic and aesthetic elements of Anglo-Irish gothic literature in The Road reveals the novel's critique of entrenched economic, racial, and gendered power in the US. The man's son, born after the apocalyptic event, represents through his generosity and exilic wandering the novel's antithesis to a geopolitical system characterized by hegemonic power over others and by rampant consumerism.