THIS IS NOT ANOTHER HAUNTED HOUSE TALE: CONSIDERATIONS ABOUT THE HORROR IN MARK Z. DANIELEWSKI’S NOVEL HOUSE OF LEAVES

Ana Isabel Ávila Mateos

Abstract

The haunted house tale appears recurrently along fantastic and horror narratives. It is structured upon the idea of the intrusion and the fight for the space of two opposite forces: the inhabitants and a ghostly entity. The horror story that lies within Mark Z. Danielewski’s complex novel, House of Leaves (2000), works as the turn on the screw of that classic approach, taking away the ghost and modeling the house as the real entity which generates the horror. In this paper, I would like to explain why Danielewski’s novel should be considered as an example of fantastic literature. Also, I will analyze the resources used by the author in order to accomplish the creation of an oppressive and startling atmosphere within the narrative, mainly making the characters, as well as the readers, face the inexplicably appearance of an empty space inside the house, which defies all logic.

Keywords

Mark Z. Danielewski, House of Leaves, fantastic literature, haunted house

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