Dark Forces at Work: Essays on Social Dynamics and Cinematic Horrors

Author, Researcher, or Creator

Cynthia J. MillerFollow

Affiliation of Author, Researcher, or Creator

Marlboro Institute of Liberal Arts and Interdisciplinary Studies


Marlboro Institute for Liberal Arts and Interdisciplinary Studies


Cynthia J. Miller and A. Bowdoin Van Riper

Resource Type


Publication, Publisher or Distributor

Lexington Books

Publication Date


Related Information


Brief Description

Dark Forces at Work examines the role of race, class, gender, religion, and the economy as they are portrayed in, and help construct, horror narratives across a range of films and eras. These larger social forces not only create the context for our cinematic horrors, but serve as connective tissue between fantasy and lived reality, as well. While several of the essays focus on “name” horror films such as IT, Get Out, Hellraiser, and Don’t Breathe, the collection also features essays focused on horror films produced in Asia, Europe, and Latin America, and on American classic thrillers such as Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho. Key social issues addressed include the war on terror, poverty, the housing crisis, and the Time’s Up movement. The volume grounds its analysis in the films, rather than theory, in order to explore the ways in which institutions, identities, and ideologies work within the horror genre.


Horror, film, politics, class, race, gender

Preferred Citation Style

Chicago Manual

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