Historical Dictionary of Horror Cinema (Historical Dictionaries of Literature and the Arts)

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9780810855854: Historical Dictionary of Horror Cinema (Historical Dictionaries of Literature and the Arts)
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Horror is one of the most enduring and controversial of all cinematic genres. Horror films range from subtle and poetic to graphic and gory, but what links them together is their ability to frighten, disturb, shock, provoke, delight, irritate, and amuse audiences. Horror’s capacity to take the form of our evolving fears and anxieties has ensured not only its notoriety but also its long-term survival and international popularity. This second edition has been comprehensively updated to capture all that is important and exciting about the horror genre as it exists today. Its new entries feature the creative personalities who have developed innovative forms of horror, and recent major films and cycles of films that ensure horror’s continuing popularity and significance. In addition, many of the other entries have been expanded to include reference to the contemporary scene, giving a clear picture of how horror cinema is constantly renewing and transforming itself.

The Historical Dictionary of Horror Cinema traces the development of the genre from its beginnings to the present. This is done through a chronology, an introductory essay, a bibliography, and hundreds of cross-referenced dictionary entries. The entries cover all major movie villains, including Frankenstein and his monsters, the vampire, the werewolf, the mummy, the zombie, the ghost and the serial killer; film directors, producers, writers, actors, cinematographers, make-up artists, special-effects technicians, and composers who have helped shape horror history; significant production companies; major films that are milestones in the development of the horror genre; and different national traditions in horror cinema – as well as popular themes, formats, conventions, and cycles.

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About the Author:

Peter Hutchings is a Professor of Film Studies at Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom. He has published widely on horror film, television and literature as well as on science fiction, crime and other popular genres.

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This twenty-fifth book in the Historical Dictionaries of Literature and the Arts series is by a scholar of the horror film who has written and contributed to several books, including The Horror Film (2004). The dictionary goes into much more depth and breadth but is still written in a very accessible style. Coverage kicks off with a chronology covering the period from 1764, when Horace Walpole authored what is thought of as the first major gothic novel, The Castle of Otranto, through the major horror-film releases in 2007. The introduction provides information on the birth, location, and meaning of horror. Following 347 pages of dictionary entries is an extremely in-depth bibliography that groups books under such categories as “Anthologies of Criticism,” “National Horror Cinemas,” and “Personnel,” including actors, directors, and writers.  In addition to entries for Abbott and Costello’s comedy-horrors, the actor George Zucco (who appeared in several horror films in the 1930s and 1940s), and films from Alien through classics such as The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, the dictionary provides entries on the various horror themes, for example, Children,The mad scientist, and Zombies. Hollywood studios such as Universal are also covered, as are the horror films of several countries. This is a must-purchase for academic libraries supporting a film-studies curriculum. It would also be useful for public libraries whose patrons are interested in horror-film history. --Christy Donaldson

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9781538102435: Historical Dictionary of Horror Cinema (Historical Dictionaries of Literature and the Arts)

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ISBN 10:  1538102439 ISBN 13:  9781538102435
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2017
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