Terribly Effective: A Theory, Exemplary Study and Defense of Contemporary Horror Fiction
ISBN 978-3-88476-397-1, 182 S., kt., € 24,00 (2000)
(SALS - Studies in Anglophone Literatures, Bd. 12)
Terribly Effective – this stands for two of the central themes of this study, which concentrates on examples of contemporary horror fiction by authors such as Stephen King and Dan Simmons, among others, as texts that are primarily intended to achieve a certain effect – to evoke terror or horror in their readers. By looking at literary theory and literary history as well as at other fields of research such as psychology, anthropology, comparative religion and reader-response theory, this study intends to come to a better understanding of terror and horror – what they are, and how they function. The analysis of exemplary contemporary horror novels is designed to illustrate the theoretical findings and to point out reccurent plot structures, ways of handling the supernatural, and narrative techniques. Ultimately, this study wants to make a convincing case for horror fiction, showing that horror literature fulfils an important function for its readers. Birgit Grein has studied English Literature, Arabic and Economics and worked as a lecturer in the English Department of the Justus-Liebig-University Giessen.