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Showing posts from July, 2016

Brainstorming A Black Women's Horror Studies

Whether as a single course or a budding discipline, this idea of a Black Women's Horror Studies was fueled by the building scholarship from myself and other academics over the past few years. The intersections of race, gender, sexuality, and class are fertile topics within the discourse of Black participation and depictions within the horror genre and not explored enough in many aspects and pursuits of intellectual satisfaction. A Black Women's Horror Studies, I hope, will quench any curiosity and become a legitimate staple in liberal arts. This is still very much a work-in-progress. All of the work compiled here is meant to be an introduction to how we can incorporate the works and images of Black women in the horror genre with a mixture of approaches for the classroom or other educational environments.

Horror Blackademics: Black Women In Vampire Fiction, Part 2

Bites from the Margins: Contemporary African American Womens Vampire Literature   by Marie-Luise Loffler and Florian Bast Online Journal: Kultur & Geschlecht #8 (2011) The full article can be read here . Key Term Intersectionality - often used in critical theories to describe the ways in which oppressive institutions (racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, xenophobia, classism, etc.) are interconnected and cannot be examined separately from one another. The concept first came from legal scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw in 1989 and is largely used in critical theories, especially Feminist theory, when discussing systematic oppression.  Source: Overview Loffler and Bast point out the foundational importance of how Black women writers produce intersectional fictional texts with central themes in African American women's literature: racism, sexism, narrative perspective. In particular with genre narrati

"Blending Gore with Human Frailty & Tragedy": Alexandra West's Films of the New French Extremity

Extremity - the furthest point or limit of something; the extreme degree or nature of something " The New French Extremity movement has shown what the French are afraid of, themselves. " -Alexandra West It can be said for any culture, community, collective, that art and the creator's existence or personal convictions are inextricably linked. As horror is deeply personal for many of its consumers, I am aware of its lifelong importance for myself as someone who struggles and pushes my own boundaries of perceived comfort. To face fear, address it, obsess over it, understand it, and possibly even neutralize its potency.

Cruel Summer: Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)

One of my favorite, and arguably one of the best slashers ever put to celluloid is Friday the 13th Part 2 (1980). The first of many sequels in the Friday the 13th franchise was produced and released during an era where this popular horror sub-genre was hitting a stride and defining its core with an intriguing blend of sophistication and terror. Because the slasher boom was sparked by the first entry (and Halloween before it and Psycho and Peeping Tom going back further), parent distribution company Paramount wanted this sequel. The cast and crew behind the Part 1 did not forsee this considering Pamela Voorhees was killed in such an iconic manner and the Jason referenced was in fact, dead. But what if he wasn't?

#SciFiSunday: Rain (2016) Movie Review

Fan film sets out to bring new life to Storm of the X-Men. Story by Maya Glick ( @MayaSokora ) Directed by R. Zane Rutledge & Jeff Stolhand Praise Afropunk . That cinematic demonstration of the forgotten misfits in society (African Americans involved in the punk/hardcore/rock spaces) curated by James Spooner, a passionate artist and punk enthusiast who once asked on an online punk community message board, "Do you know any Black people?" What began as a documentary that deeply spoke to my own need for self-acceptance turned into an empowering online haven. And this is where, after a long hiatus from my X-Men comic book and card collecting habit I acquired from a childhood friend, it all came back to remembrance when I saw a variation of Storm that did not get much lip service in my small circle.

Generation Purge: Interview with The Purge: Election Year's Brittany Mirabile

A senator and survivor of a sadistic annual Purge night participant's gruesome home invasion that left her family dead looks to nab the presidency to put an end to The Purge. With the upcoming Purge Night, her opponents conspire to take her out of the political campaign. Will she survive the night? Written & Directed by James DeMonaco It's probably the thing on everyone's mind who went out to see  The Purge: Election Year (2016) over the July 4th weekend; not only was it cleverly chosen to usher in the United States' annual celebration of its independence from British rule, but did  Election Year just give an overt smack to our past and present? Or is it predicting our future? In many ways, yes and both. It's only even made more daunting by the fact that we can fill in the gaps with recent examples of this assertion that lays bare a country in a racial, cultural, economic, and political hailstorm that really hasn't known much else ever.

Horror Blackademics: Dr. Maisha Wester

Dr. Maisha Wester holds a B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. in English from the University of North Florida, Jacksonville as well as the University of Florida, Gainesville. Her primary research interests are African American gothic literature and horror films, "specifically as the tropes mask horror over racial, ethnic, and sexual others." She is currently an Associate Professor at Indiana University Bloomington in the African American & African Diaspora Studies department who has taught and lectured across the country. She has written and presented her research on the work of Eli Roth, Toni Morrison's Beloved , 2005's The Skeleton Key and much more. All with a focus on Black female representation, history, race, class, and feminism.