By Paul Hurh
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Additional info for American Terror: The Feeling of Thinking in Edwards, Poe, and Melville
Feeling Thinking Jonathan Edwards is the first and most forthright of the three authors of this study to trouble the distinction between emotion and reason, through his pithy note, “the mind feels when it thinks” (SP 345). We have seen above how difficult it can be to think about feeling, especially when the feeling itself, in the case of terror, is oriented toward the very operations that would produce knowledge. ” For the authors of this study, thinking is not a self-evident process or faculty.
14 Stephen King suggests in his study of the genre that cultural preoccupations—from the Cold War to acne—Â� become manifest in the monsters of horror: invading spacemen for Soviet Sputnik (12), the disfigured face of teenage Frankenstein for the juvenile horror of acne (47–48). Symptomatic horror is different from terror in that it relies 16 INTRODUCTION upon some perceived deviation; one can feel horror by being confronted by a hideous, many-tentacled, and drooling monster, just as one can feel horror by hearing about atrocities committed by a dictator upon his people.
12 Therefore, it is inadequate to describe the terror I chart in this study, because for these American authors, the power of blackness does not derive from its ability to be appropriated instrumentally for the satisfaction of an individual subject but rather from its uncompromising demand that such appropriations are possible deceits and evasions from a real, not fictional or framed, threat. 13 But to this must be added the complicating addendum explored earlier: what keeps terror from being reframed as the sublime is that terror seems to be about the impulse to refit its fear into rational and purposive categories.
American Terror: The Feeling of Thinking in Edwards, Poe, and Melville by Paul Hurh