Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

ragXdoll wrote:

At the university i go to there is a horror literature class.

I would love to experience something like that. 

In high school, I did a term paper on Jack the Ripper.  Sister Elizabeth was not amused. big_smile

Last edited by LivingDeadDoll (2009-07-20 15:14:49)

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

I actully took a horror class in highschool and college...both were pretty good...it absolutly deserves some merit as there are some classic horror novels out there

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

When I was at school we read just what we wanted to. We could either choose books from the school library (or classroom bookcase) or bring our own. Most of us were reading James Herbert from about 10 years old (none of us really liked Stephen King because it just didn't reflect our culture since it was American and all).

Some of the books which were meant for my age group to read back in the day that I fondly remember were any of the Alfred Hitchcock short story collections, Robert Westall's novels, all those ghost stories by Aidan Chambers and the occasional "Pan Book of Horror".

I also liked Shakespeare's Macbeth 'cos it had witches in it. smile

As for teaching horror in the classroom, yes, there are some authors that should be avoided. I'd avoid the previously mentioned Stephen King because life isn't long enough for most of his books plus they all suck. Also Clive Barker is a bit too "out there" for most people's tastes and there's nothing worse as a kid than not being interested in what you are being forced to read. I remember only too well the agony of having to read "Brave New World"...

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

I agree that horror should be included in curriculum's, but there should be a limit to what is used. We read a couple works by Poe at my school.. and Frankenstein . I think that the classics should be used ... not just any random horror novel because we think it's cool.

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

I only mentioned the "Dark Tower" because I thought it would interest the kids. It is one of my favorite books and I believe it does have literary value. I think that the future will look on King like we do with Charles Dickens now.

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

Pfft. I love King, but his writing has virtually no literary value. Even he has admitted as much. He's a great storyteller, but he's got shitty literary technique.

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

i recall reading The Lottery in school, Poe at a few points, and prior to those a dark story called Peppermints in the Parlor.

so i dont think school is devoid of horror persay. i think the gunslinger series is a little young of a novel for you to be able to get it in tho.

then again i dropped out at a young age, i couldnt say what kind of english curriculum was available past 9th grade
now im in college, and currently taking eng 102. we have an entire two weeks worth of work devoted just to Poe.
we recently read The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, i highly recommend it!

it is a shame about King tho... im curious as to why he isnt in any of the english books. perhaps its notariety that will come to him after his death... but i definately think he is one of the most modern writers that is deserving of being taught in the classroom, for sure!

try to get some short stories from Nightmares and Dreamscapes into the classroom! Chattery Teeth, for example is something good for younger kids by King

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

Horror does belong in english  class.As for Lovecraft,he shows that less can be more.And if it gets someone who might not otherwise resd to start then it would be worth it.

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

^^^^^^^We read the Monkey's Paw also. I think Edgar Allen Poe should be read.

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

You do read Poe, Lovecraft, and other writers in schools here. As early as junior highschool I remember reading the Tell-Tale Heart. And Universities offer courses in Science Fiction or Fantasy literature that often includes many modern authors like the aforementioned Barker and even King. So the question isn't should we teach it... we already are. But perhaps how much of it should be taught. Which is still up the those whom create the curriculum and the teacher him or herself that teaches any particular class. Shakespeare is over-taught. When Chaucer or Milton could provide equally as interesting of a look at the diverse roots of English literature. But perhaps curriculum in your area needs to open up to include more modern, and lesser taught writers of the horror or supernatural genres. It still breaks down to how good the Education system is in your community, and how open minded and eclectic collection of writings the teachers are willing to attempt to include in their lesson plan.

Last edited by Doctor_Pepper (2009-09-02 17:23:56)

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

I think that horror is elemental to Literature classes.  It should be explored, even if in a weird, Twilight Zone way like The Lottery, or in the morality play put forth in The Monkey's Paw.  Poe goes so many places in where the psyche can take one, and there are so many "classics" that put forth brutality and psychological fuckery to no end, I think that all avenues of literature should be examined.

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

Pretty excellent subject that should be discussed a lot. Since I don't have the time right now, I'll just say that it would be a great alternative for schools, but I don't think all people can appreciate horror and its elements. Even the youngsters.

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

In my opinion, I think the subject of horror could and would be better suited to the college classroom. I'm not sure the subject itself could be appreciated by young adults because I think "Twlight" and works by Stephanie Meyer populate the shelves more than anything else for that particular demographic and and those same young adults are watching PG-13 half baked horror flicks..or even worse, REMAKES of original horror works.

I think those that TRULY enjoy the overal horror genre would be able to get more out of it and appreciate it more if it were an elective course in the English studies curriculum.

I know from first hand experience... I was in an advanced English literature course in my sophmore year of college and one of our assignments was to do a through report on any period of time in English history. I thought about the genre of horror and actually ended up looking through REALLY old works on microfilm from back in the 1400 and 1500's and found some absolutely fantastic stuff. It made the subject fun because I was allowed to CHOOSE what I wanted to do a report on as oposed to being TOLD what to report on, whereby it made me engaged me to do a thorough analysis of the works.

I think it would make for a most interesting course. Imagine if the course was able to have a special Q and A with a horror writer? Or possibly show off your skills leared in class by producing some horror prose for an assignment? The opportunities are endless smile lol

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

Well honestly who the hell enjoyed Hamlet? Time to put Shakespeare back in his time period.

Re: Does Horror Belong in the English Classroom

Yeah, horror should be taught. It's the only way that some people will ever "get" traditional stuff. Take me for example: Last year, we read the original Frankenstein by Mary Shelley and watched a bit of Kenneth Branagh's remake of it. And I absolutely loved it.

Well honestly who the hell enjoyed Hamlet? Time to put Shakespeare back in his time period.

Uh, I did. cool Also, Hamlet can be a horror movie, if done correctly (ie: By and starring Kenneth Branagh, not by Tim Burton, or starring Mel Brooks).