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Folk HorrorHours Dreadful and Things Strange$
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Adam Scovell

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781911325239

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781911325239.001.0001

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(p.35) Chapter 3 Topographies
Folk Horror

Adam Scovell

Liverpool University Press

This chapter examines the role of landscape in Folk Horror. Landscape can be used to isolate but, especially in British Folk Horror, the realms of possibilities opened up by an aesthetic and thematic emphasis on landscape leads to a huge range of complex functioning. Because landscape can be so nuanced, and almost infinitely variable, there is almost an ease in mythologising it; to drawing out its already folklorically contained mystery and heightening its speculative character, to the point of inducing fantastical and terrifying apparitions. Folk Horror often denies reason and embraces new forms of, often theological, moral authority; it just so happens that this is linked almost consistently with the topographical location of its societies. In a sense, Folk Horror frames itself in such landscapes to evoke the awe-inspiring terror embraced in such a period of artwork, but also ironically suggests that such terror be derived from a more primitive set of ideals; the sort that Romanticism seemed to equally embrace but at a comfortable, lofty distance.

Keywords:   landscape, Folk Horror, British Folk Horror, topographical location, terror, primitive ideals, Romanticism

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