(Un)common Horrors

No. 2 - Year 12 - 06/2022

University of Zadar | ISSN 1847-7755 | SIC.JOURNAL.CONTACT@GMAIL.COM


A theoretical and practical introduction to the topic of horror genre, and its popularity and persistence as an art form, can tentatively be summarized through Stephen King’s famous statement about horror movies, where King argues that if regular movies are the dreams of the mass culture, then horror movies are its nightmares. An analytical unraveling of this premise surpasses the addressed media and contexts, while simultaneously fragmenting into a multitude of discourses, ranging between scholarly readings of a particular storyline, the evaluation of social and cultural implications these plots bring with them, the narrative improvements, regardless of the media/platforms articulating the genre, as well as many other critical approaches that the phenomenon allows for. It is within this extremely wide range of possibilities that this issue of [sic] seeks to position itself, and in doing so, open a debate concerning at least some of the problems relating to the common or uncommon nature of the genre. The aim of this issue is therefore not focused on what could be observed as a customary and specialized approach to the genre, where a particularity or a phenomenon is being addressed through a myriad of methodologies, but it instead wants to target the unexplored and uncustomary readings of new or already analyzed topics. ...

Literary Translation
Lejla Kalamujić and Blaž Martić:

The night has put the village to sleep, the streets are empty, the gates are locked. Only Nana Sofija sits in front of her house, looking at the sky. The moon is as big as a balloon of milk ready to pop. It looked the same that night, a long time ago, when she and Milica sat in front of the house. It got so close to the ground that it seemed it wanted tickle the crowns of the trees. They giggled, took turns laying down in each other’s lap, talking. Before going to bed, Sofija went to the outhouse bathroom to wash. She lathered her body eagerly, thinking about the jokes they had told. She stroked her breasts, her belly, her upper arms. She spread her legs to reach what women quietly called down there. A flickering image of Milica’s warm eyes came to her, it was as if she was still there. She felt a weird jolt. She spread her lips, then looked left and right to make sure she was alone. Her fingers kept moving. The blood inside boiled up with lust. The moonlight burst over the fields. So,...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.12.lt.1
Literary Translation
Senko Karuza and Tomislav Kuzmanović:

It’s summer and the beer keeps flowing down our throats, the music echoes from a club and every now and then we walk out on the terrace to catch a breath of air free of smoke, to meet someone and start something new, and if it doesn’t happen, we go back inside and shake at the dance floor, at the bar. And when we get bored, we walk out again and look from someone.We give up before the end, before sunrise, because we cannot stand the dawn that will reveal our impotence, we stumble and laugh along as if we’ve won a trip to the heavens in which no one lives, we give everything we’ve got to remain in this good trance, we imagine what we’d do if she weren’t such a cow that got hooked on that good-for-nothing, and, after all, don’t you think good girls always end up with the likes of him, we’ll never understand it. Comfort is good, but not good enough to put an end to this night, to peacefully collapse into our bed next to the open window and fall asleep as if love exists, and tonight we jus...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.12.lt.6
Literature and Culture
Carina Stopenski, Chatham University, USA:

This paper discusses affect and body horror through the lens of abjection, specifically how we react to viscera and extremes of the body. Body horror’s usage of female protagonists creates a dichotomous space of both feminism and anti-feminism, agency and oppression. In this paper, the character archetype of the female mutilator is proposed as a foil to the final girl trope, one who takes back her power through explicit gore and violence. Using three key filmic texts (Nicholas Pesce’s The Eyes of My Mother, Richard Bates Jr.’s Excision, and Lucky McKee’s May), this paper approaches the concepts of abjection and the monstrous feminine as they converge at the feminine grotesque in order for the female mutilator to actualize her identity. Keywords: affect, abjection, horror studies, film studies, body genresAs a generic entity, horror forces us to evaluate the way terror impacts our bodies. The subgenres of horror propose a variety of emotional responses: unease, shock, disgust, anxiety. ...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.12.lc.1
Literature and Culture
Tijana Parezanović, Alfa BK University, Serbia:

Since the very first appearance of eighteenth-century Gothic tales, horror narratives have had a lot to say about space, that is, of how human protagonists interact with their surroundings, and how the environment reflects and affects their feelings, anxieties and preoccupations. This seemingly unusual but rather strong connection was in the early days transposed onto the American continent, where it went on to become one of the red threads of literary and cultural imagination, transcending a single horror narrative and recurring in a series of them, evolving as the genre evolved through changing social and historical circumstances. However, not many larger-scope academic publications have appropriately addressed this intricate aspect of the American cultural imagination. This is precisely what Marko Lukić’s Geography of Horror: Spaces, Hauntings and the American Imagination offers: a reconsideration of the history of American fiction through the prism of the genre and with firm theore...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.12.lc.6
Literary Translation
Andrea Bajani and Tatjana Peruško:

Bilo je jasno da će prije ili poslije dječak s naočalama i crvenim hlačicama šutnuti loptu izvan igrališta. Bilo je jasno jer ju je udarao pakosno, kao da postoje neriješeni računi između stopala i lopte, ne mareći odveć za smjer, protivnika ili završni rezultat. Kad god bi krenuo u napad, ti bi se načas isključio iz razgovora. Osjetio bi kako se netko u tebi penje na male ljestve - baš tu, ispod prsne kosti - odakle se utakmica očito bolje vidi. Ti bi stajao ondje i puštao ga da se popne, a topot njegovih stopala po prečkama zvučao ti je kao kakvo dopunsko srce. Nadao si se da ga ne čuje gospođa koja je sjedila pored tebe, i s kojom si, u odijelu i s kravatom, razgovarao o nekretninama, porezima i špekulacijama. Čim bi se igra prekinula, ti bi u sebi ponovno začuo stopala kako silaze prečkama, zadihanost i zatim tišinu. Tada bi ponovno progovorio: dvadeset godina iskustva za savjet prijateljici. Kad je došlo do izjednačenja shvatio si da je stigao i čas da se pomakneš s klupe. U tebi ...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.12.lt.5
Literary Translation
Patricia Esteban Erlés and Gordana Matić:

Probudila nas je vatra. Sestra i ja užasnute smo ugledale bakinu kuću lutaka kako gori u kutu naše sobe. Nekako smo jastucima uspjele ugušiti požar pa poput dvaju uznemirenih divova provirile unutra. Plamenovi su zacrnjeli šarene tapete, a ostaci namještaja stršili su kao kostur pougljenjene ptice. Kašljale smo sve do stuba. Prazne oči ogledala zrcalile su samo trag od pepela koji je lebdio u zraku, pa smo malim prstom razvalile vrata spavaonica na drugom katu, strepeći od onog najgoreg. Usamljena porculanska stanarka, udovica otkad joj je suprug sestri nespretno ispao iz ruku, visjela je s lustera svoje spavaonice. *Češljat ću te kad god me to budeš tražila, govorila je ružna blizanka lijepoj, prihvaćajući ulogu služavke osuđene na sjenu. Lijepa je blizanka voljela slušati pseći dah svoje sestre, znati da je budna u olujnim noćima i da bdije nad njezinim mirnim snom. Zabranjujem ti da spavaš, govorila bi joj, ne smiješ zaspati prije mene, a ako dođe čudovište, neka prvo pojede tebe, i...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.12.lt.2