I taught an introductory horror film course this past summer, and was faced
with the same difficulties of choosing a text (particularly since my course
focused on post-1960's horror!). Feeling bold, I decided to try Isabel
Pinedo's recent book, _Recreational Terror: Women and the Pleasures of
Horror Film Viewing_, SUNY Press, Albany, 1997. If your class will focus
on classic horror films, then this book might not be right for you, but I
recommend it for contemporary films. Pinedo synthesizes a lot of difficult
horror film scholarship in a relatively easy to understand study of
contemporary films. While the book was somewhat inappropriate for a
lower level course, I used it anyway. Most of the students could decipher
the difficult parts, since the films really illustrate the ideas so clearly; I
"translated" the material that students had difficulties with and it led to
some really interesting class discussions. I had originally wanted to use
David Skal's book, _The Horror Show: A Cultural History of Monster
Movies_ but it seemed to be Out of Print <!?>.
Anyway, if it helps or inspires you in any way, there are lots of handouts
and things I used to supplement the horror class available at the home
page I used for the class:
Best wishes with it! I'm sure the course will be popular and enjoyable.
-- Mike Arnzen
**** Original Message Follows ****
"horror textbook query"
By [log in to unmask] <[log in to unmask]> (15 Oct 98, @ 12:09)
> after hiding from the threat for some years i've decided to face
> the monster and have agreed to teach a course on horror films
> in the spring . . . while i know at least some of the interesting work
> on the genre, a lot of what i know is fairly advanced, certainly
> too complicated for non specialist undergrads most of whom
> will be taking the course simply to fulfill a humanities distribution
> requirement . . .
> can anyone recommend materials [a book or, perhaps even better,
> a number of essays] that would provide appropriate background
> reading for such a course . . . to the extent that the material touches on
> [or tackles] the latent gender issues in the genre i would be especially
> thanks much
> mike frank
> Screen-L is sponsored by the Telecommunication & Film Dept., the
> University of Alabama.
Michael A. Arnzen * Dept. of English * University of Oregon
"Each thing we see
hides something else we want to see."
You can page me "live" on the web at:
Online resources for film/TV studies may be found at ScreenSite