chapter  1
9 Pages

The return of the repressed? British horror’s heritage and future

BySteve Chibnall, Julian Petley

It is now nearly thirty years since David Pirie published his seminal A Heritage of Horror, and far too many since it was last in print. In the intervening period there has been an explosion of interest in the Gothic in general, and in horror cinema, Gothic or otherwise, in particular. Whereas the unfortunate Pirie had little more to draw on for critical sustenance than works such as Mario Praz’s The Romantic Agony (1933), Devendra P. Varma’s The Gothic Flame (1957) and the journal Midi-Minuit Fantastique – all of them admittedly formidable in their different ways – the modern enthusiast for horror in all its forms has a truly remarkable number of texts to consult, as our contributors’ bulging references amply testify.