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Johan Höglund

This essay argues that Stephen King‘s 2006 novel Cell explores the age of terror with the aid of two concurrent Gothic discourses. The first such discourse belongs to the tradition that Patrick Brantlinger has termed Imperial Gothic. As such, it imagines with the War on Terror that the threat that the (Gothic) Other constitutes is most usefully managed with the help of massive, military violence. The other, and more traditional, Gothic discourse radically imagines such violence as instead a War of Terror. The essay then argues that Cell does not attempt to reconcile these opposed positions to terror. Instead, the novel employs the two Gothic discourses to describe the epistemological rift that terror inevitably creates.

Gothic Studies
Peter Schwenger

For Maurice Blanchot, writing is associated with the ‘other’ night, of which literal darkness is only the shadow. Writers, like insomniacs, seek a resting place that cannot be attained, a control leading only to passivity. Stephen King‘s The Dark Half (1989) – a novel about writing – is a Gothic exemplar of Blanchot‘s theories.

Gothic Studies
or, The Self-Possessed Child
Steven Bruhm

The late twentieth century is fascinated by the phenomenon of the gothic child, the child who manifests evil, violence, and sexual aggression. On the face of it, this evil is “caused” by either medical or social factors: medicinal drugs, radiation, or the corrupting influences,of political others. However, this essay argues that the gothic child actually arises from conflicting forces of child-philosophies, the intersection of Romantic childhood innocence with Freudian depth models. These models tacitly point to a child that “is” rather than “is,made”, a child that belies contemporary parental attempts to make it be otherwise. Moreover, the idea that the child is somehow immune to parental influence – that it is self-possessed rather than possessed by another – extends to the current notion of,the “inner child”, that “self” who is the seat of identity and coherence. Because of this, the gothic as often fantasizes the killing of the “child within” as it revels in killing the child without.

Gothic Studies
Gothic kinship in Stephen King’s Pet Sematary
John Sears

‘There was something very familiar in this rap, something eerily familiar –’ ( Pet Sematary ). Early in Stephen King’s Pet Sematary (1983), a neighbourly act of kindness establishes a surrogate family relationship – between a symbolic

in Gothic kinship
Nordic Gothic and transcultural adaptation
Maria Holmgren Troy

for this film adaptation and it was directed by Tomas Alfredson. Riget and Låt den rätte komma in have also spawned American adaptations, which will be discussed together and compared with von Trier's and Lindqvist's Nordic Gothic productions in this chapter. Based on von Trier's TV series, Stephen King developed Kingdom Hospital (ABC 2004, thirteen episodes) with von Trier as one of the executive producers. Kingdom Hospital was the first American adaptation of a Danish TV series, 2

in Nordic Gothic
Henry Sutton

material, from both a thematic and craft perspective, I’ve found to be crucial. Planning is part of the plotting process. Stephen King has some stern things to say about plot in his classic On Writing . ‘I won’t try to convince you that I’ve never plotted any more than I’d try to convince you that I’ve never told a lie,’ he wrote, ‘but I do both as infrequently as possible. I distrust plot for two reasons: first because our lives are largely plotless, even when you add in all our reasonable precautions and careful planning; and

in Crafting crime fiction
Henry Sutton

No plan, no plot is Lee Child’s well-known practical mantra, which also speaks to Jack Reacher’s philosophy and way of being. 1 Or, as detailed in Heather Martin’s authorised biography, The Reacher Guy , Lee Child would say blithely, ‘I never plot.’ 2 Stephen King, we also know, greatly distrusts the idea of ‘plotting’, because, as he says in On Writing , he believes ‘plotting and the spontaneity of real creation aren’t compatible’. 3 Patricia Highsmith, as we also know, didn’t just believe

in Crafting crime fiction
Abstract only
Editors: and

Although the preoccupation of Gothic storytelling with the family has often been observed, it invites a more systematic exploration. Gothic Kinship brings together case studies of Gothic kinship ties in film and literature and offers a synthesis and theoretical exploration of the different appearances of the Gothic family. The volume explores the cultural mediation of the shifting relations of kinship and power in gothic fictionfrom the eighteenth century up to the present day. Writers discussed include early British Gothic writers such as Eleanor Sleath and Louisa Sidney Stanhope as well as a range of later authors writing in English, including Elizabeth Gaskell, William March, Stephen King, Poppy Z. Brite, Patricia Duncker, J. K. Rowling and Audrey Niffenegger. There are also essays on Dutch authors (Louis Couperus and Renate Dorrestein) and on the film directors Wes Craven and Steven Sheil.

Arranged chronologically, the various contributions show that both early and contemporary Gothic display very diverse kinship ties, ranging from metaphorical to triangular, from queer to nuclear-patriarchal. Gothic proves to be a rich source of expressing both subversive and conservative notions of the family.

Abstract only
John Robb

flowers of evil were in bloom. It gave rise to an aesthetic that would extend all the way to the ‘monster culture’ of 1950s adolescents (exemplified by Stephen King, who’d bring Gothic to Small Town USA 25 ) and, later, to the so-called ‘elevated horror’ of the 21st century. In the late 20th century, the electricity of pop culture galvanised a new Frankenstein’s Monster that became known as goth. While few performers or bands accepted the backhanded term, the darker aesthetics that had infiltrated rock music for years

in The art of darkness
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American horror comics as Cold War commentary and critique

Printing Terror places horror comics of the mid-twentieth century in dialogue with the anxieties of their age. It rejects the narrative of horror comics as inherently and necessarily subversive and explores, instead, the ways in which these texts manifest white male fears over America’s changing sociological landscape. It examines two eras: the pre-CCA period of the 1940s and 1950s, and the post-CCA era to 1975. The authors examine each of these periods through the lenses of war, gender, and race, demonstrating that horror comics are centred upon white male victimhood and the monstrosity of the gendered and/or racialised other. It is of interest to scholars of horror, comics studies, and American history. It is suitably accessible to be used in undergraduate classes.