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Analyzing Horror Fiction: Home

A guide to critical analysis of both classic and contemporary horror fiction

Intro to Topic

Welcome to my Libguide on horror fiction analysis! Here, you will find resources on the psychological appeal of the horror genre (both books and films) and articles that discuss what horror says about humankind and modern society (in other words, the messages hidden beneath the blood and gore!). You will also find recommendations for both classic and modern horror novels as well as accompanying analyses to illuminate how horror novels have great metaphorical resonance and aren't always superficial, easy reads as many people assume. This guide does not attempt to expertly analyze any single text, but rather to demonstrate the complexity of this genre. This guide focuses on horror novels, though some resources describe horror films, as their conclusions are applicable to both forms. 

I hope that this guide:

  • Serves as an introduction to the psychology behind the horror genre
  • Provides examples of how horror can be a mirror of society
  • Helps you cultivate an appreciation for horror novels beyond their entertainment value
  • Introduces you to classic and contemporary horror texts

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Horror Novels

Despair book cover