Tu/W/Th 03:00-05:30 209 Dwinelle Instructor: Jordan Greenwald

Session D:  July 3rd-August 11th.

This course will trace the legacy of an American genre, the horror story, from the nineteenth century to the present.

We begin with famous writers of the American Renaissance (Hawthorne, Irving, Poe) and inquire about why the horrors of Dark Romanticism are at the very roots of American literary culture. What is it about the cultural and physical landscape of nineteenth-century United States that makes it so fertile for the writing of horror? In what ways are the horrors of nineteenth-century American history (slavery, settler colonialism, empire) registered and represented in Gothic and supernatural stories, and in what ways do they remain merely “specters”? What can the horror story of the nineteenth century teach us about racial dynamics then and in the present?

We then move to the Hollywood classics of horror cinema and evaluate the horror film’s capacity to interrogate (or, at times, perpetuate) American social ills. Our task is to analyze how classic horror films represent gendered power dynamics, make manifest repressed sexual desire, lampoon cultures of consumerism and suburbanization, and examine (and/or deploy) the fear of racial, ethnic, or national Others.

In the second part of the course, we will consider the plurality of cultural histories and identities to which the horror genre gives voice. We will read fiction and watch films by Indigenous, Black, Chicano and Asian American authors and filmmakers that represent histories of immigration, displacement, discrimination, and social and economic marginalization. We will consider not only how these works respond to historical and social realities, but also how they critically retool the horror genre as a means of enriching social imaginaries.

Possible Texts Include:

Washington Irving, “The Devil and Tom Walker”

Stephen Vincent Benét, “The Devil and Daniel Webster”

Nathanial Hawthorne, “Young Goodman Brown”

Edgar Allen Poe, The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym (excerpts)

Merien C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack, King Kong

Jacques Tourneur, I Walked with a Zombie and Cat People

H.P. Lovecraft, “The Horror at Red Hook”

George Romero, Night of the Living Dead

Tobe Hooper, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Stanley Kubrick, The Shining

Toni Morrison, Beloved

Jeff Barnaby, Rhymes for Young Ghouls

Clive Barker, Candyman

Sherman Alexie, Indian Killer (excerpts)

Guillermo del Toro, Cronos

Maxine Hong Kingston, The Woman Warrior (excerpts)

Comp Lit N60 001 AC: 美国恐怖故事

本课程将追溯从十九世纪至今的美国流派——恐怖故事。我们将从美国文艺复兴时 期的着名作家(霍桑、华盛顿·欧文、爱伦·坡)着手去思考为何黑暗浪漫主义的恐怖是美 国文学文化的根源。何种十九世纪美国的文化观和物质观令恐怖故事的写作如此盛行?在 哥特式和超自然的故事中19世纪美国历史(奴隶制、殖民主义、帝国主义)代表和表现了 何种恐怖?他们又以何种方式成为故事中“幽灵”的影射?十九世纪的恐怖故事又能如何教 导我们过去与如今的种族动态?

读完美国恐怖故事,我们将转战好莱坞经典恐怖电影,并衡量恐怖片审讯美国社会 弊病的能力。我们将分析经典恐怖片如何代表性别化的权力动态、体现受压制的性欲、讽 刺消费主义、郊区化等文化现象、并审视与运用与种族、民族或民族他者相关的恐惧心理 在课程后半部分,我们将进一步考虑恐怖体裁给予多元文化历史和多元身份的声音 。我们将阅读小说,观看印第安裔、非裔、墨西哥裔和亚裔美国作家和电影制作人的电影 。这些电影表现了移民、流离失所、种族歧视、社会和经济边缘化的历史。我们不仅要考 虑这些作品回应历史和社会现实,还要思考如何批判性地改造恐怖体裁、使其成为丰富社 会想像力的手段。