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Horror as Pleasure

The Aesthetics of Horror Fiction

By Yvonne Leffler
Translated from the Swedish by Sara Death
December 2000
Almqvist & Wikselk
ISBN: 91-22-01899-9
302 Pages
$69.50 paper original

The author attempts to explain the popularity of horror fiction by studying the themes and narrative techniques acting together to evoke aesthetic pleasure from the sensation of horror. Topics include: The horror story as an audience-oriented genre concept. Early horror fiction. The 19th and 20th centuries. Mass media horror fiction. Mimetic art. Edmund Burke and the sublime. Rudolf Otto. Freud's influence. Mystery. The monster. Fiction and emotion. Make-believe. Mental images. Fear and its object. The horror story as aesthetic pleasure. Bibliography. List of films. Index.

Literary Criticism