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Saturday, October 27 • 6:15pm - 7:15pm
The Horror Genre and Resisting Fluid Definitions

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From “This film was inspired by actual events” to “it happened to a friend of a friend of mine,” horror has long held a terse relationship with reality; but what is it about the genre that causes it to defy its “death of the author” artistic freedom to be, in exchange, shackled to the reality of its audience? Horror’s relationship to the real, its ability to disrupt and make fluid the fictive genre categories that try to separate it from reality, makes it horrifying. What is actually being stated by the disclaimer of authenticity isn’t simply an acknowledgement of truth; it’s a warning, and the threat has nothing to do with copyrights or legalities. It’s a warning that the contents of the film have already breached the boundaries that separate fact from fiction, reality from the world of horror and the supernatural—and that makes its content a direct threat to its audience’s definitions of reality.

This panel examines multi-media forms, like Afterlife with Archie: Escape from Riverdale, The Mist, “Dear David,” Slender Man, and The Blair Witch Project, and audience reactions to those forms, in order to explore horror’s ability to resist and make fluid genre definitions, thus “disturbing the frame” to impose the threat of its form on those who dare to look.


Saturday October 27, 2018 6:15pm - 7:15pm
Room 501 Ballroom Level 5