Why We Crave Horror Movies

This study guide will help you analyze the text “Why We Crave Horror Movies” by Stephen King. We will show you examples of elements in the text that will be relevant for your analysis. In these notes, we will focus on summary, analysis, topic, writer, reader, language, modes of persuasion, circumstances, and intention

Presentation of the text

Title: “Why We Crave Horror Movies”
Writer: Stephen King
Genre: Essay
Publication date: 1981

Stephen Edwin King (b. 1947) is an American author of horror, science fiction, suspense, and fantasy. He has published 54 novels, seven of which under the pen name Richard Bachman. He has also written around 200 short stories, most of which have been published in his book collections. Many of his books have been adapted into films, television series, and comic books.


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Allusions and direct references

King uses allusion (an indirect reference) to create an uncomfortable feeling in his readers, as they are reminded of the most common fear of all – the fear of death: “those final worms and grubs that are waiting so patiently underground.” King also alludes to the mutilated victims of Jack the Ripper and the Cleveland Torso Murderer, calling the two killers “amateur-night surgeons”. Moreover, King's direct references to Jack the Ripper and the Cleveland Torso Murderer serve as a reminder that real-life horror exists, which contributes to the feeling of fear King aims to create in his readers.


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Why We Crave Horror Movies

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