Clive Barker

Dark imaginer

This book explores the diverse literary, film and visionary creations of the polymathic and influential British artist Clive Barker. It presents groundbreaking essays that critically reevaluate Barker's oeuvre. These include in-depth analyses of his celebrated and lesser known novels, short stories, theme park designs, screen and comic book adaptations, film direction and production, sketches and book illustrations, as well as responses to his material from critics and fan communities. The book examines Barker's earlier fiction and its place within British horror fiction and socio-cultural contexts. Selected tales from the Books of Blood are exemplary in their response to the frustrations and political radicalism of the 1980s British cultural anxieties. Aiming to rally those who stand defiant of Thatcher's polarising vision of neoliberal British conservatism, Weaveworld is revealed to be a savage indictment of 1980s British politics. The book explores Barker's transition from author to filmmaker, and how his vision was translated, captured, and occasionally compromised in its adaptation from page to the screen. Barker's work contains features which can be potentially read as feminine and queer, positioning them within traditions of the Gothic, the melodrama and the fantastic. The book examines Barker's works, especially Hellraiser, Nightbreed, and Lord of Illusions, through the critical lenses of queer culture, desire, and brand recognition. It considers Barker's complex and multi-layered marks in the field, exploring and re-evaluating his works, focusing on Tortured Souls and Mister B. Gone's new myths of the flesh'.

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‘All in all, Dark Imaginer fills the gap in the academic treatment of Barker's works and gives a good overview of his beauty marks, warts and all.'
Dejan Ognjanovic
Ninth Circle

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