Lovecraftian Horror Question One

Within both The Void and Lovecraft’s The Shadow Over Innsmouth, there is a recurring theme of the corruption and change of what is considered to be the natural form of humanity. The breaking of our perception of normality allows the authors of these texts to create a sense of fear and disgust in the audience.

As with all horror, the primary goal of works within the sub-genre referred to as body horror is to illicit fear and revulsion in the audience of the work. Defined as ‘the explicit display of the decay, dissolution and destruction of the body’ in  Well’s (2007), these texts often break down the conventional understanding of what the body should and should not do, as well as how that then can impact those around the incident. The main fears that these texts are playing on are the “anxieties surrounding transformation, mutation and contagion”, as stated in Reyes (2014). The ideas of disease and corruption spreading through the human body and often among the larger human population is what illicit the revulsion that many people feel towards body horror texts.

The way in which texts can engage with the ideas that are encompassed by the themes of body horror can be vastly different. The Void and The Shadow Over Innsmouth are excellent examples. In The Void, there are several individual uses of body horror, all different in their own ways, yet united by a theme of corruption by dark arts. Several deceased characters mutate into slimy, tentacled monsters with very little in common with their previous human forms. These transformations are graphic, and designed to cause a physical reaction in the audience as they experience both fear and disgust at what they are seeing. We also see the corruption of what seemed to be a normal pregnant women’s baby into one of the beasts, bursting forth covered in blood. The way in which the characters mortality and natural corruptibility were shown was used to full affect in order to create a true fear response in the audience. The film uses this to explore the theme of the unknown in how the characters fear what is causing all the horrible changes to happen. Whatever power is driving these changes is obviously powerful, but other than that the characters (and the audience) barely have any idea what it is. We encounter its followers, the cultists, and those it has changed, but never gain any real insight into the source of all that is wrong, which in itself adds a sense of menace to the story.

The Shadow Over Innsmouth engaged with the concept of body horror differently than The Void. While the film, once the monsters were introduced, pushed the limits on what the human body could handle, mutating it almost beyond recognition right away, the inhabitants of Innsmouth were far more insidious in their corruption. Lovecraft describes the main characters first encounters with them in un-flattering terms, saying “He had a narrow head, bulging, watery–blue eyes that seemed never to wink, a flat nose, a receding forehead and chin, and singularly undeveloped ears.” Lovecraft (1939). While this description does seem unkind, as the story progresses the level to which the inhabitants are described to be mutant like in appearance, with fish heads and webbed hands. The protagonist’s fear both of these changes and the horrible powers that could possibly cause them fills the story. The Deep Ones, the ones that provide the inhabitants with their unnatural appearance, are just a power in the background of the story for the most part. Believed to live below Devils Reef, they are spoken of only in myth and rumor, yet are the ones that corrupted the town and are worshiped as gods. The most visible signs of their power is the mutations that blight the townsfolk, which by themselves illicit fear and revulsion, and therefore creating even more fear when thinking of those unknown beings that wield such unnatural power.

Both of these texts make excellent use of body horror to create a sense of fear in both characters and audience as to the unknowable horrors that are causing the changes we see.

By Samuel Rendall

 

 

Lovecraft, H. P. (1939). The shadow over Innsmouth.

Reyes, X. A. (2014). Body gothic: Corporeal transgression in contemporary literature and horror film. Cardiff: University of Wales Press.

Wells, P. (2007). The horror genre: From Beelzebub to Blair Witch. London: Wallflower Press.

 

Reyes (2014), describes Body Horror as being a “fictional representation of the body exceeding itself or falling apart, either opening up or being altered past the point where it would be recognized by normative understandings of human corporeality.” How do The Void and Lovecraft’s The Shadow Over Innsmouth make use of this definition to explore themes of the unknown?

The Shadow over Innsmouth by H.P Lovecraft and the film the void by Steven Kostanski and Jeremy Gillespie, use a number of different styles of horror to do what horror is meant to do. Scare people. As I have never had a great interest in horror, that explanation has always suffice as to why people make and watch horror. But as it usually goes, when looking in depth at something you start to realize that it is more complicated than that. Horror films, split into their many genres are not just meant to scare you, but scare you in a particular way. The void and the Shadow over Innsmouth, bring about a sense of fear of the unknown. The greatest evil is not something we can face, but something that is beyond our meager understanding. This is explored using the style of Body horror in the two works we have read and watched over the last two weeks. 

The shadow over Innsmouth is a work of horror fiction by H.P Lovecraft published in 1931. In the story a man uncovers a shocking and dangerous secret in the decrepit town of Innsmouth, while on a traveling holiday around America. In the second chapter of the story, the sense that something is amiss grows and becomes more real through the description of the towns bus driver. He is said to have a particular shambling gait, watery eyes and large hands (Lovecraft, 1931) these descriptions become more vivid as the story unfolds until we realize that these transformations are part of the greater evil in the story. The use of body horror, is being used to build tension and fear.  According to the book of body horror (Marie O’Regan & Paul Kane, 2012) there are three main styles of body horror. Anxiety surrounding transformation, mutation and contagion. The Shadow over Innsmouth represents the first two, as the townspeople are mutating into monsters and the stories protagonist grapples with massive anxiety towards those mutations. How this then goes on to connect with the theme of, the fear of the unknown, is how these transformations are linked to the larger story. As mentioned above, the noticeable changes that our protagonist sees adds a layer of terrible mystery to the story, however, we learn later that the main threat in the story comes from a race of powerful underwater beings referred to simply as the the deep ones. There is little exact information about them, but we know they possess great power, are almost indestructible and capable of destroying humanity if they wished. They are a mostly unseen evil in the story, mentioned indirectly. We learn early on of the mysterious religion, the order of Dagon, a cult that worships the underwater gods. Tales and rumor’s surroundings ancient ruins on a volcanic island where the members of this cult have been praying. But most directly, we feel their presence in the story through the changing, mutating towns people. Stableford (2007) Remarks that body horror does not show us the limit of our bodies, but the possibilities through transformation or explosion. The style of body horror therefore becomes the way in which we fear, understand and wonder at the great evil in the story and as that evil is mostly unexplained, it comes to represent a fear of what is unknown.

The film the Void, directed by Steven Kostanski and Jeremy Gillespie, uses the body in a similar way. In this film, a group of people become trapped in a hospital, where a grief stricken doctor has began experimenting on people and worshipping old demonic gods. The reasons for this is not explained in an exact way and how the film could be interpreted depends on the viewer, but in the story are two distinct styles of Horror. Cosmic and Body Horror. Cosmic horror, according to Stableford (2007) should reveal to us the true world. Not what our senses can describe but the whole of existence in a completely inconceivable way. Body horror is used to explain this purpose to the audience. Not only does body horror give us two of the films monsters, grotesque, tentacled abominations, which the characters are forced to fight against in the film, 

those monsters add to that incomprehensible nature of the cosmos. The film uses a number of visuals to communicate to the audience a greater sense of dread and terror. Cutting away to brief scenes of swirling, masses of space and atmosphere. Hooded villains which move and appear as if by magic. Even the setting, a hospital, which the characters can’t escape from, could be seen as representing our basic sensory level of understanding, which we are incapable of escaping or grasping an understanding beyond from. However, what the style of Body horror then does, is give this theme a real link to the characters and audience. Reys (2014) describes Body horror as a way to stage a celebration of the bodies capability from transformation or mutability. We don’t celebrate the transformations, but the possibility becomes real for the audience and we realize just how much we do not know or understand. We begin to fear the unknown.

In both the Void and The shadow over Innsmouth, the fear of what we don’t know is the overarching enemy in the story. It is what we are suppose to sense in the work and Body horror is used to help the audience understand this. In both works the body becomes the tool of the greater power in the story. In the shadow over Innsmouth, the underwater creatures are influencing and controlling the town and we see this through the mutation of the townspeople. In the Void, the doctors experiments and worshipping is seen in a literal sense in the monsters which he creates. So again, the destruction of the body is a way to translate a fear of what we don’t know. 

References:

Stableford, B. (2007) The Cosmic Horror: Icons of horror and the supernatural. 

London,England 

O’Regan, M. Kane, P. (2012) The book of body horror:Constable 

London, England

Rey’s, A, X. (2014) Corporeal Transgression in Contemporary Literature and Horror Film

University of Wales, Wales

Lovecraft, H, P. (1939) The shadow over Innsmouth

WEEK 2: Lovecraftian Horror – Question 3

According to Joshi (2007), a tale from the Cthulhu Mythos has several defining features that occur regularly throughout Lovecraft’s work. What are the features and how are they used in The Shadow over Innsmouth? Furthermore, can you see any of these features being used in The Void?

Two of the main features of the Cthulhu Mythos are the use of other gods and a violation of natural law. These features are evident throughout H. P. Lovecraft’s “The Shadow over Innsmouth” as well as the film “The Void” by Steven Kostanski and Jeremy Gillespie. These features are used to horrify the audience as well as communicate the theme cosmicism.

To understand how these features are used, it is important to first understand the theme of cosmicism. Lovecraft (1934) states that “The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown” (p. 1). This fear is precisely where the theme of cosmicism is drawn from. Lovecraft (1934) continues to explain cosmicism as a realisation that there is no divine power and that humanity is insignificant to the vastness of the universe. The inability of humans to comprehend the universe in its entirety not only plays on mankind’s fear of the unknown, but grants a god-like status to the powers of cosmic entities.

The use of ‘other’ gods is a definitive feature of both Lovecraft’s work as well as the wider Cthulhu Mythos. This feature appears in Lovecraft’s short story “The Shadow over Innsmouth” through the mentioning of the entity Cthulhu and its worshipers known as The Deep Ones. The Deep Ones reside in the depths of the ocean but have started interbreeding with the humans of Innsmouth creating amphibius human hybrids. The story’s protagonist describes these hybrids as having a particular look with “queer narrow heads with flat noses and bulgy, stary eyes that never seem to shut, and their skin ain’t quite right” (Lovecraft, 1936). By painting the hybrids in a negative light, it demonstrates the fact that the narrator does not really have a grasp on the reality of the situation. The visual representation of these hybrids not only repulses the reader but aims to provide a sense of fear through lack of understanding. Additionally, the visibility of the hybrids gives validation to the possibility that another race exists and therefore, so must another god. However, the inability of the protagonist to comprehend the human hybrids and therefore fear them is used to demonstrate the theme of cosmicism. 

The use of ‘other’ gods is also a key feature used in “The Void”. The ‘other’ god in the film hails from another dimension but has some form of resurrection power. It is through the visual representation of the voids beings that the ‘other’ god is really given power. In this film, humans have been implanted with creatures from the other dimension. Later in the film they appear as disfigured and mutated creatures with tentacle-like extremities. The vile depiction of these void creatures is meant to make audiences uncomfortable but also promote the idea of human insignificance in the universe. This idea is supported by Stableford (2007) who claims the notion of humans being capable of conquering the universe was never that strong, suggesting there were other more capable creatures. Coherently, the creatures of void are stronger and more powerful (surpassing human limitation of life through resurrection) than humans. This feature contributes to the idea that the ‘other’ god and it’s followers are superior to humans, continuing the theme of cosmicism. 

The violation of natural law is a feature also present in ‘The Shadow over Innsmouth’ the violation of natural law. This is seen through the interbreeding of humans and the Deep Ones. It is understood as a violation because of the manner in which those who look mixed are described. One in particular is described by the narrator as having “watery blue eyes that seemed never to wink, a flat nose, a receding forehead and chin, and singularly undeveloped ears” (Lovecraft, 1936). Through this description, Lovecraft makes the hybrids seem sub-human rather than mythical suggesting to the audience a violation of natural law has occurred. This depiction is also important to the theme of cosmicism as it makes the reality of the Deep Ones and hybrids more plausible, reaffirming humankind’s existence as trivial. 

Similarly in ‘The Void’ a violation of natural law occurs when Doctor Richard Powell uses the power of  the void to try and resurrect his dead daughter. The resurrected creatures are formed from human beings, so initially carry human-like features. However, the human-void creatures of the film progressively become more grotesque and less human as the film plays out. While the penultimate creature hardly resembles a human, it is important to recognize that this was a progression. The fact that the creatures all started from or within a human body and are mutated suggests an element of truth to the film. This is important to the Cthulhu Mythos as Joshi (2007) explains it is rooted more on science fiction than the supernatural. Therefore, by using the human body as a starting point it allows for a violation of natural law to occur rather than a supernatural phenomenon.

The use of ‘other’ gods and a violation of natural law are recurring features of Lovecraft’s work and the Cthulhu Mythos as a whole. These particular features are recognisable within both “The Shadow over Innsmouth” and “The Void”. Both texts employ these features as a means of demonstrating cosmoscism, a theme prevalent throughout the Cthulhu Mythos.

References:

Joshi, S. T., (2007). The Cthulhu Mythos. In Icons of Horror and the Supernatural. (Vol. 2, pp. 97-128). Wesport, CT: Greenwood Publishing Group

Lovecraft, H. P. (1934). Supernatural Horror in Literature. Retrieved from http://www.hplovecraft.com/writings/texts/essays/shil.aspx 

Lovecraft, H.P. (1936). Shadow Over Innsmouth. Everett, PA: Visionary Publishing Co.Stableford, Brian (2007). The Cosmic Horror. In Icons of

Horror and the Supernatural. (Vol. 2, pp. 65-96). Wesport, CT: Greenwood Publishing Group


Week 1-2, Lovecraftian Horror – Question One

1. Reyes (2014), describes Body Horror as being a “fictional representation of the body exceeding itself or falling apart, either opening up or being altered past the point where it would be recognised by normative understandings of human corporeality.” How do The Void and Lovecraft’s The Shadow Over Innsmouth make use of this definition to explore themes of the unknown?

Body horror, a genre trope where the human body is altered past the point where it would be recognised is apparent in the short story The Shadow Over Innsmouth and in the film The Void. While this trope is fictional, it plays with the very real human fear about the unknown and the incomprehensible.

In The Shadow Over Innsmouth, body horror is illustrated throughout the narrative. In the story, the narrator finds himself travelling to Innsmouth, the small town is described as deserted, the people are suspicious and, the heart and soul of the town rely on their oddly close relationship with the sea. According to Lovecraft (1934), a “man’s first instincts and emotions formed his response to the environment in which he found himself” (p. 2). So, the reader will get a sense that the local’s relationship with the sea is surrounded by a mist of strangeness and will be naturally curious about it as is the narrator. After talking to a local, the narrator finds that there are fish-like beings who live offshore in the reefs. Those beings, the Deep Ones, produced offsprings with the locals, creating a hybrid between the natural and the supernatural – something that the human mind would believe is morally incorrect. That is how body horror was used to explore the unknown in Lovecraft’s short story. Reyes (2014) mentioned that body horror includes the body being altered past the point where it is understood by humans. In The Shadow Over Innsmouth, those who are hybrids take on fish-like features once they reach a certain age. In a way, the hybrids were portrayed in a manner which was very similar to how the monster was portrayed in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Mentioned in an essay by Lovecraft, the monster is a character which is “… rejected by mankind, becomes embittered, and at length beings the successive murder of all whom Frankenstein loves best, friends and family” (1934). Throughout the story, the narrator had given his reader the strong impression that being a hybrid having those fish-like features was looked down upon – it was too strange and not a common sight. So, to a reasonable person, it is an atrocious thing to be a hybrid. Yet, while the narrator continuously emphasised his disgust with the hybrids, eventually, at the end of the story, the narrator found that he was a hybrid and embraced his true form right away; illustrating some morphed sense of superiority once he realised he was more than human.

In the film The Void, body horror was explicitly visualised in order for the audience to witness the abnormality, the slime and tentacles, and everything else common to Lovecraftian horror. From the beginning of the film, the gruesome unknown entity along with a mob of loyal cultists proved to be a threat to mankind, which was evident through the constant deaths, and the foreboding sense of dread through the film. For the large part of the film, the purpose of all the merciless killings and the ultimate aim of the demonic entity and cultists were unknown to the humans, not to mention the very fact that they existed was unexplainable. To the human characters and to the audience watching the film as well, that information was knowledge “… which lies beyond the phenomenal world of ordinary perception…” (Stableford, 2007, p. 80). Reyes’s (2014) definition of body horror doesn’t become blatantly apparent and truer until one scene in particular, where a nurse, Allison, woke up on an operating table to the news that a creature from the unknown now grows inside of her. In relation to Reyes’ (2014) definition, in that scene, Allison’s body was opened and altered past the point where even the person who knew her best, Powell, could not recognise her and destroyed her mutated remains with an axe. As a result, that scene illustrated that Allison was essentially a “… passive spectators of their own dispossession and objectification: they watch their body parts take up a life of their own” (Reyes, 2014, p. 56).

To conclude, The Void and Lovecraft’s short story The Shadow Over Innsmouth, though the two use completely different mediums, they managed to represent body horror in a manner which allowed them to explore the themes of the unknown.

Lovecraft, H. P. (1934). Supernatural Horror in Literature.

Reyes. (2014). Body Horror. In Body Gothic Corporeal Transgression in Contemporary Literature and Horror Film.

Stableford, Brian (2007). The Cosmic Horror.

Week 2 – Lovecraftian Horror

q. Reyes (2014), describes Body Horror as being a “fictional representation of the body exceeding itself or falling apart, either opening up or being altered past the point where it would be recognised by normative understandings of human corporeality.” How do The Void and Lovecraft’s The Shadow Over Innsmouth make use of this definition to explore themes of the unknown?

The general definition of ‘Body Horror’ is “intentionally showcases graphic or psychologically disturbing violations of the human body. These violations may manifest through aberrant sex, mutations, mutilation, zombification, gratuitous violence, disease, or unnatural movements of the body”[1]. Xavier Aldana Reyes specifies in his book ‘ Body Gothic: Corporeal Transgression in Contemporary Literature and Horror Film’ that Body Horror is a “fictional representation of the body exceeding itself or falling apart, either opening up or being altered past the point where it would be recognised by normative understandings of human corporeality.” Body Gothic: Corporeal Transgression in Contemporary Literature and Horror Film The general definition of ‘Body Horror’ is “intentionally showcases graphic or psychologically disturbing violations of the human body. These violations may manifest through aberrant sex, mutations, mutilation, zombification, gratuitous violence, disease, or unnatural movements of the body”[1]. Xavier Aldana Reyes specifies in his book ‘that Body Horror is a “fictional representation of the body exceeding itself or falling apart, either opening up or being altered past the point where it would be recognised by normative understandings of human corporeality.”

The Void, directed by Steven Kostanski and Jeremy Gillespie, uses the body horror subgenre to assist in the exploration of the themes of the unknown and disturbing cosmicism. Examples from within the film are Bethany becoming an indescribable, unrecognisable creature driven insane by forbidden knowledge, all the characters who are killed/dead resurrecting and slowly turning into zombie-like creatures, and Doctor Powell turning Allison into a vessel for rebirthing his dead daughter, thus turning Allison into a disturbing, tentacle-filled machine. The themes of cosmicism and body horror are evident throughout the film, and as Chris Hewitt of Empire magazine wrote, “with repeated nods to the likes of Lucio Fulci, George A. Romero, Clive Barker and, particularly, John Carpenter, whose Prince Of Darkness is the most obvious template here… [Gillespie and Kostanski] prove themselves adept at conjuring a bleak, paranoid, foreboding atmosphere from the off.”[2]. I, however, found that the themes of cosmic horror and body horror in The Void failed to instil a sense of dread in me as the story-writing and character relationships and conflicts fell flat. I am a bit of a stickler for a good story needing a handful of complex characters with varying degrees of internal and external conflict and I feel that these shortcomings had a negative impact on the key themes in the text, restricting them from being able to have a profound impact on me.

The Shadow Over Innsmouth, written by H.P. Lovecraft in April 1936, near the end of his life, uses body horror in a far more disturbing, horrifying way. Assisted by the fact that this text is a story compared to the previous film example, the horrors on the page are brought to life by our own imaginations – the descriptions powered by our own understanding and interpretations of these ideas and concepts are what manifest into the truly terrifying and disturbing. Zadok’s tale of “the Deep Ones”, the hybrid fish-frog-men who have come up from the ocean, and the disturbing knowledge that human sacrifices were made to these hybrids, influences the reader to imagine these creatures as gruesomely inhumane and outsiders, different to the normal, plain human beings of Innsmouth. The idea that as their half-breed, human-hybrid children look human in their younger years but slowly, as they grow up, they begin to morph and transform into their hybrid forms is chilling. Not only was the realisation that the narrator is a half-breed a shock to the reader (and narrator), but his decent into madness and willingness to go off into the ocean, into a world of the unknown, was all too disturbing. Though the story was rejected by Weird Tales in 1933, it went on to be published years later and several Lovecraftians received is positively, August Derleth called The Shadow over Innsmouth “a dark, brooding story, typical of Lovecraft at his best.” Robert Weinberg praised it as “a well-written story”[3]

Body Horror, when done correctly, can be a terrifyingly moving subgenre within Horror and has been a classic of horror since the 80s. You won’t see me scrambling to watch one though.

References:


[1] https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/01956051.2012.654521

[2] https://www.empireonline.com/movies/reviews/void-review/

[3] https://lovecraft.fandom.com/wiki/The_Shadow_Over_Innsmouth

Week 2 – Horror – Question 1: Reyes (2014), describes Body Horror as being a “fictional representation of the body exceeding itself or falling apart, either opening up or being altered past the point where it would be recognised by normative understandings of human corporeality.” How do The Void and Lovecraft’s The Shadow Over Innsmouth make use of this definition to explore themes of the unknown?

The Shadow Over Innsmouth

 “The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown.”

– H.P. Lovecraft

What is Cosmicism?

Lovecraft’s stories held a belief in hopelessness; that humanity is insignificant and powerless in the huge unknown universe, you can beat the evil entity only temporarily, it will eventually return and humanity will be extinguished (how depressing lol); his philosophy stated that there is no god or divine entity, however there are creatures of unknowable power who can pass as gods out there in intergalactic existence.

Cosmic horror is meant to feed on humanities natural fear of the unknown, especially the dread and loneliness some people feel about what could be out in the far reaches of the cosmos.

Though I do not feel any fear of the galaxy, only awe, and perhaps loneliness; but I love space, I often wonder what it would be like to live amongst the stars. And so cosmic horror does not so much scare me, but it does disturb me.

My impressions of Shadow over Innsmouth were that of disinterest due to Lovecraft’s tendency to go in to too much detail and long winded explanations which take him far too  long to get to the point. I found myself getting bored before I even got to the “actual Story”. I was saying to myself “just get to the point already” and “what does this thing he is writing such a long paragraph about have to do with the story”. My point being he just rambles a lot in his writing it seems. This does not deter from my enjoying his mythos and ideas of cosmic horror and the fear of the unknown which is prevalent in all humanity.

 

As the quotation by Reyes (2014) states; the description of body horror was prevalent in The Void film which we watched in class last week; the doctor in the film has found this unknown entity that he has created some sort of cult to worship and conduct harrowing experiments on poor human victims, in his mission of sorts to cheat death and bring his daughter back from the dead; only to turn them and himself in to inhuman creatures; their body’s being morphed and torn to shreds by the ‘entity’ tentacles petruding from their mouthes for example. The film challenged humanity’s ideas of mortality; I left the film thinking their must have been, though we never saw the true form of the evil behind the doctor’s actions. It must be some ancient far superior alien civilisation coming to attack the lesser species of humanity. The message should be that Humans should never play with the natural order of things; never bring the dead back to life because you have no idea what you could be bringing back.

The shadow over Innsmouth centres around the “fish People” and so Lovecraft describes human bodies that have obvious fish like features which goes against what people see as how a human should look. he describes how these suposed humans have no hair, are grey in color, have flat noses, and wrinkled apearing skin on their neck which came across as an obvious indicator of ‘gills’.

these stories show the idea of the human body being pushed past its limits, ending in something that cant be recognised as human by other fellow humans anymore.

References:

Lovecraft H.P. (1936). Shadow Over Innsmouth.

Lovecraftian Horror

Welcome to the Popular Genres blog folks! This is where you will be responded to the texts we are studying, so make sure you know how to navigate it.

This week we are taking a deep dive into Lovecraftian Horror or Weird Fiction. Please make sure you have seen The Void and read A Shadow Over Innsmouth as both will be required to answer any of these questions.

Also, your academic readings for this week are on Blackboard, so please engage with them as you will be expected to use AT LEAST three references in your posts (which by the way, should be at least 500 words)

Anyway, please choose at least one of the following questions to respond to and make sure that you CATEGORIZE your post according to the week it belongs in. If you do not do this, then I may not see it.

Questions:

Reyes (2014), describes Body Horror as being a “fictional representation of the body exceeding itself or falling apart, either opening up or being altered past the point where it would be recognised by normative understandings of human corporeality.” How do The Void and Lovecraft’s The Shadow Over Innsmouth make use of this definition to explore themes of the unknown?

What is the philosophy of cosmicism and how is it used to convey a sense of dread in both The Shadow Over Innsmouth and The Void?

According to Joshi (2007), a tale from the Cthulhu Mythos has several defining features that occur regularly throughout Lovecraft’s work. What are these features and how are they used in The Shadow Over Innsmouth? Furthermore, can you see any of these features being used in The Void?

Stableford (2007) details the historical formation of Cosmic Horror prior to Lovecraft. Describe in brief this formation and how it affected the Lovecraftian School of Cosmic Horror which would soon become the gold standard. Can you see any of these historical movements having an influence in The Shadow Over Innsmouth or The Void?