ISBN-10:
0313361827
ISBN-13:
9780313361821
Pub. Date:
04/30/2005
Publisher:
ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
Projected Fears: Horror Films and American Culture

Projected Fears: Horror Films and American Culture

by Kendall R. Phillips
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Overview

Movie audiences seem drawn, almost compelled, toward tales of the horrific and the repulsive. Partly because horror continues to evolve radically—every time the genre is deemed dead, it seems to come up with another twist—it has been one of the most often-dissected genres. Here, author Kendall Phillips selects ten of the most popular and influential horror films—including Dracula, Night of the Living Dead, Halloween, The Silence of the Lambs, and Scream, each of which has become a film landmark and spawned countless imitators, and all having implications that transcend their cinematic influence and achievement. By tracing the production history, contemporary audience response, and lasting cultural influence of each picture, Phillips offers a unique new approach to thinking about the popular attraction to horror films, and the ways in which they reflect both cultural and individual fears. Though stylistically and thematically very different, all of these movies have scared millions of eager moviegoers. This book tries to figure out why.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780313361821
Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
Publication date: 04/30/2005
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 529,432
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Kendall R. Phillips is Associate Professor in the Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies at Syracuse University. His essays and reviews have appeared in such journals as Literature/Film Quartlery and Philosophy and Rhetoric.

Table of Contents

Introduction

Dracula (1931)

The Thing from Another World (1951)

Psycho (1960)

Night of the Living Dead (1968)

The Exorcist (1973) and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)

Halloween (1978)

The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

Scream (1996)

The Sixth Sense (1999)

Conclusion

Bibliography

What People are Saying About This

A. John Graves

"Phillips has provided deep and probing insights into the relationship between ten classic horror films and the cultures they reflect. This is a challenging but rewarding read for serious fans, film buffs, and filmmakers, as well as scholars. Even the writers and directors of these classics stand to be enlightened by learning of the impact, scope, and significance of their realized concepts."

A. John Graves, Professor Emeritus of Mass Communication, Central Missouri State University

Thomas W. Benson

"Kendall Phillips explores the cultural resonances and rhetorical form of American horror films of the 20th century. He takes us from Dracula (1931) through Psycho (1960), The Exorcist (1973), The Silence of the Lambs (1991), and other films that have shocked and horrified us, in a lucid account of the cultural contexts that gave them birth and influenced their reception. His lively and wide ranging account will certainly send readers back to the films for another look."

A. John Graves

"Phillips has provided deep and probing insights into the relationship between ten classic horror films and the cultures they reflect. This is a challenging but rewarding read for serious fans, film buffs, and filmmakers, as well as scholars. Even the writers and directors of these classics stand to be enlightened by learning of the impact, scope, and significance of their realized concepts."

Charlton McIlwain

"Projected Fears goes well beyond being exemplary film and media criticism. Kendall Phillips provides an intriguing and cogent synthesis of visual, textual, and cultural analyses that present a unique, useful, and welcomed reframing, retelling, and reinterpretation of human history and memory through the lens of one of our most important and popular forms of artistic expression—not to mention a genre that has long been a focus of public fascination—the horror film."

Charlton McIlwain

"Projected Fears goes well beyond being exemplary film and media criticism. Kendall Phillips provides an intriguing and cogent synthesis of visual, textual, and cultural analyses that present a unique, useful, and welcomed reframing, retelling, and reinterpretation of human history and memory through the lens of one of our most important and popular forms of artistic expression--not to mention a genre that has long been a focus of public fascination--the horror film."

Charlton McIlwain, Assistant Professor of Culture & Communication, New York University, and author of When Death Goes Pop: Death, Media & the Remaking of Community

Thomas W. Benson

"Kendall Phillips explores the cultural resonances and rhetorical form of American horror films of the 20th century. He takes us from Dracula (1931) through Psycho (1960), The Exorcist (1973), The Silence of the Lambs (1991), and other films that have shocked and horrified us, in a lucid account of the cultural contexts that gave them birth and influenced their reception. His lively and wide ranging account will certainly send readers back to the films for another look."

Thomas W. Benson, Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of Rhetoric, Penn State University

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