Heimlich Maneuvres: On a Certain Tendency of Horror and Speculative Cinema

The present volume emerges out of an ongoing, sometimes acrimonious, debate over the viability of psychoanalytic theory to explicate horror and speculative cinema. The doubtfulness of influential critics like Noel Carroll on this score is indicative of a general skepticism about the worthiness of “applied analysis’ in cinema and other critical studies, which has escalated over the past decade. One notes that not a few spear-carriers for the current eruption of anti-Freudianism have been former true believers themselves (e.g., Frederick Crews, generalissimo of the famous New York Review of books “Freud Wars,” who in a previous incarnation authored a workmanlike analytical study of Hawthorne).

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