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Latest Topics

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The reemergence of social horror

Get out capitalized on an old formula of using exaggerated horror to commentate on pressing social issues in the vein of Invasion of the Body Snatchers or Rosemary’s Baby. Do you think that it will usher in a new era of horror more concerned with having a greater social commentary?

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    Under His Eye: fundamentalism and fertility

    Why do Offred’s (and the other handmaids’) experiences both terrify and resonate strongly with a 2017 audience? Did Atwood predict the future back in 1984 when she wrote the novel?

    • It is crazy how things are playing out in the world maybe he did see the furure – rayd 4 hours ago
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    What makes a good action movie romance?

    What makes two people (usually a man and a woman) compatible in an action movie? How do these moments get interspersed with action? What’s the difference between a Bond seduction and a Tron flirtation? Why is The Matrix my favorite romance series? Are there harmful stereotypes, is there empowerment of female characters? Does kink gloss over unhealthy habits? Much to discuss!

    • Interesting connection here. Good examples too. – Munjeera 3 months ago
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    • Good choice for favorite romance series – Linden 2 months ago
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    • An interesting perspective. Looking forward to seeing what someone does with it. – AGMacdonald 3 days ago
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    • Interesting contrast could be Bond-Bourne too, as the recent Bonds are so similar to Bourne but Bond still does the whole romancey thing, where Bourne largely leaves it alone. – Marcus Dean 2 days ago
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    Artistry in Horror

    How do films and television shows utilize blood and gore in artistic ways to further the plot and to create a visceral reaction without going overboard. Where is the "sweet-spot" of horror and is it the gestalt of the production that makes it palatable?

    Looking back to Peter Greenaway’s "The Cook the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover," the use of dynamic lighting, opulent costumes, and luxurious set draw the audience in while opening up all of the senses. It is as if you can taste, touch and smell this film. This, juxtaposition with filth and violence that follows creates a more dramatic sensory shift thus intensifying the horror of the film.

    Currently, "Penny Dreadful" utilizes some of the same production values to appeal to the senses of the audience before flooding ballrooms with blood.

    What are other examples of transcendent use of blood and gore and how are directors achieving high levels or artistry within horror.

    • examining the horror media in early 20th century and others could be useful. Also, the essays from horror writers like H.P Lovecraft or Stephen King could help – idleric 4 days ago
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    • Julia Kristeva's theory of abjection is a difficult one to grasp but is exactly right for this topic. – JudyPeters 2 days ago
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    Why study creative writing?

    Many great writers never studied the craft. Today, more and more students are enrolling in creative writing degrees. Edward Delaney has written in The Atlantic, on ‘Where great writers are made’, about America’s top graduate writing programs – emphasising the importance of time (money) and something to react against. Is that it? Lynn Davidson writes movingly in her article ‘A roof over my head’ for Text journal about structure, and being part of an ongoing conversation. How has the current long apprenticeship evolved; in what ways does it tap into a tradition of writing mentorships and creative communities and what aspects might be evidence that we are seeing a different model emerging?

    • My sub major is creative writing and I would have to say, if I didn't do the introductory unit to this course I would not have found my passion and love for poetry, writing and reading in general. I believe without studying it or practising creative writing you won't achieve the best that you can achieve. You won't get a lot out of it if you did it here and there. Studying it takes it to another level and I love that. In the end a writer should not write or get published just to earn money, my tutor told me if you are going about your profession this way then you are doing it wrong. You must do it because you love it and because you want your words to be heard and read. As I said earlier, I would not have found my passion for poetry and writing if I did not do this course. You can learn so much about different authors, writing techniques and to be honest you would be surprised how much you learn about yourself also. Of course, having a mentor or someone who knows creative writing well is always a good idea. Having support is so important especially if you want to get published one day. It can be challenging at times, I've been told you will get turned down but it is part of the job and the journey. – claraaa 2 months ago
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    • I love this topic. I studied creative writing and got degrees in it, which I definitely think helped get me published. Why study creative writing? My question is, Why not? – Stephanie M. 5 days ago
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    • It's always good to broaden your knowledge and hear from others, and writing skills be no different; but obviously there are people who have achieved great success without writing courses. It's really whatever works for you.It might also be interesting to look into the growing number of free online resources that emerging writers are using to train themselves. – AGMacdonald 3 days ago
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    Has the Mash-up Novel Run its Course?

    A mash-up novel (also called mashup or mashed-up novel), is a work of fiction which combines the text from pre-existing literature, often a classic work of fiction, with another genre, such as horror, into a single mashed-up narrative. Though the term itself wasn’t coined till about 2009, the first mash-up (of sorts) may have been "Move Under Ground" by Nick Mamatas, a 2004 novel combining the Beat style of Jack Kerouac with the cosmic horror of H. P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos. The first mash-up proper was Seth Grahame-Smith’s hugely successful 2009 novel, "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies". Subsequent mash-up novels include "Sense and Sensibility and Seamonsters", "Little Women and Werewolves" and "Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter" (also by Grahame-Smith), the last of which was adapted into a film of the same name. A more recent phenomenon within the genre is the combination of more than two original works, or genres, as in the case of Robinson Crusoe (The Eerie Adventures of the Lycanthrope), which combines the original novel with elements borrowed from the works of H.P. Lovecraft as well as the popular genre of werewolf fiction, and is accordingly attributed to three authors – Daniel Defoe, H.P. Lovecraft, and Peter Clines. Mash-up novels are, by their very nature, derivative and lacking in creative substance … or am I being hypercritical? Is it all just a cheap marketing gimmick that’s doomed to die from lack of originality… or does the mash-up have potential creative legs to keep it running?

    • You knocked the nail on the head with this one. Often these books will coast along on the popularity of the source material and come off as a gimmick. – AGMacdonald 3 days ago
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    • I hope it isn't dying out! Maybe a more judicious choice of original source material could be considered - I think Jane Austen has been done to 'death', pardon the pun. – JudyPeters 2 days ago
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    Shadowhunters and Deviation from the Novels

    The Shadowhunters TV show has proved to be good at mixing the plot of the novel with new plots. Discuss the ways in which the show has been dedicated to its origin while also exploring new alleyways and the ways in which fan reactions have gone.

    • A good way to do this would be to break down some main characters and their traits in order to draw comparisons to the books. – Southy567 6 days ago
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    • I agree with Southy567's point. A list of the main characters and their deviations would be a good starting point (major one could be the death of Clary's mother)! Depending on the length, the main events (battles, wedding) that have deviated could also be included. – AbbyMay 3 days ago
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    LGBTQ Characters in Anime

    Which anime series or films have been successful at accurately portraying characters who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or part of any group in the LGBTQ community? Which ones have failed? Give multiple examples and explain why.

      Film

      How Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales Rejuvenated the Entire Pirates Franchise
      How Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales Rejuvenated the Entire Pirates Franchise
      Can Homosexuals Save the Roman Epic From CGI?
      Why Steve Rogers Should Die in Avengers: Infinity War
      Little Miss Sunshine or Little Miss Psychological Dysfunction

      TV

      The Moral of Doctor Who: Answering the Questions of “Genesis of the Daleks”
      The Moral of Doctor Who: Answering the Questions of “Genesis of the Daleks”
      The Virginian’s Political Journeys
      Black Mirror: A Look at Modern Day Paranoia
      “The Flash” as the Modern Equivalent of 1960’s “Batman”

      Animation

      Best and Worst Disney Role Models for Girls and Young Women
      Best and Worst Disney Role Models for Girls and Young Women
      Feminism and Disney: They’re Not As Different As You Might Think
      Disney and the Perils of Adaptation
      Masculinity in Steven Universe: A Matter of GEMder?

      Anime

      The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya: The Journey of The Hero
      The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya: The Journey of The Hero
      Why Western Culture is Beginning to Embrace Anime
      Otaku as Artist: Hideaki Anno and Neon Genesis Evangelion
      The anime gold rush in the early 21st century

      Manga

      One Punch Man vs. My Hero Academia: Reconstructing the Silver Age of Comics
      One Punch Man vs. My Hero Academia: Reconstructing the Silver Age of Comics
      Manga: How to Travel Between Dimensions
      Naruto: The Unresolved Revolution
      The 5 Saddest Moments in One Piece

      Comics

      Comic Books, Adults, and a History of Stigmatization
      Comic Books, Adults, and a History of Stigmatization
      The Social Stigma of Comic Book Reading
      What Should Happen To Captured Super Villains?
      Finding the Bridge Between Superhero Comics and Hip-Hop

      Literature

      Phantom of the Opera and the Problem of “Shipping”
      Phantom of the Opera and the Problem of “Shipping”
      His Dark Materials: Conflict, Justice and Mental Health
      Online vs Print: The Digital Age of Books
      The College Era Lyrics and Ego of Kanye West

      Arts

      Enhancing Performance: Self-Care for All Artists
      Enhancing Performance: Self-Care for All Artists
      Celebrating Finnish folk songs: Finland’s centennial anniversary
      Free Play: The Social, Cognitive & Emotional Pay Offs of Allowing Whimsicality
      Discovering the Five Poussin’s in ‘Gallery 617’

      Writing

      Creative Texting: Writing and Textspeak
      Creative Texting: Writing and Textspeak
      Parallel and Alternate Realities; Fiction Tells us the Difference
      Genre Fiction in University Writing Programs: No longer the MFA’s Red-headed Stepchild
      Can you Teach Someone how to Become a Writer?