"Phillips analyzes ten landmark horror films, including Dracula, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Silence of the Lambs and The Sixth Sense, to discover the ways horror films reflect their cultural contexts and the audiences' fears. In addition to his analyses, Phillips provides a synopsis of each film and describes its production history, contemporary audience response and cultural influence. Although Phillips incorporates the work of other film and cultural critics, he writes for a general audience."
Reference & Research Book News
"The book is sensible, highly readable, and concise….[t]his book will best serve as an introduction to the horror genre. Recommended. Lower-/upper-division undergraduates; general readers."
"Fans of horror and horror movies who wish an intellectual examination of links between horror films and American culture will find professor Kendall R. Phillips' Projected Fears: Horror Films and American Culture to be most intriguing."
"[E]xplores the relationship between 10 classic horror films and the cultures they reflect."
US States News
"Kendall Phillips explores the cultural resonances and rhetorical form of American horror films of the 20th century. He takes us from Dracula
(1931) through Psycho
(1960), The Exorcist
(1973), The Silence of the Lambs
(1991), and other films that have shocked and horrified us, in a lucid account of the cultural contexts that gave them birth and influenced their reception. His lively and wide ranging account will certainly send readers back to the films for another look." (Thomas W. Benson, Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of Rhetoric, Penn State University)|"Phillips has provided deep and probing insights into the relationship between ten classic horror films and the cultures they reflect. This is a challenging but rewarding read for serious fans, film buffs, and filmmakers, as well as scholars. Even the writers and directors of these classics stand to be enlightened by learning of the impact, scope, and significance of their realized concepts." (A. John Graves, Professor Emeritus of Mass Communication, Central Missouri State University)|"Projected Fears
goes well beyond being exemplary film and media criticism. Kendall Phillips provides an intriguing and cogent synthesis of visual, textual, and cultural analyses that present a unique, useful, and welcomed reframing, retelling, and reinterpretation of human history and memory through the lens of one of our most important and popular forms of artistic expression--not to mention a genre that has long been a focus of public fascination--the horror film." (Charlton McIlwain, Assistant Professor of Culture & Communication, New York University, and author of When Death Goes Pop: Death, Media & the Remaking of Community