Panel: Mythology in Fantasy and Horror Literature

Historically, horror and fantasy genres are often seen as separate from mainstream literature so that in some literature environments they are even not seen as valuable enough for academic debate. Although such storytelling styles can be seen as being only speculative and therefore related to problems in society, in actual fact much fantasy writing both references historical events and contemporary issues, and are often challenging statements on contemporary society.  The use of metaphor as a way of tackling important social issues therefore can make fantasy writing comparable to any literary genre. One might also claim that since the fantasy/horror genre is also often based on myths and legends, and the history of the places where people live, that it can focus directly on cultural differences and the fears that haunt any society at any moment in time. Contemporary horror and fantasy literature that has been produced in an Anatolian geography has of course a deep connection to wealth of oral “traditional” storytelling, myth, and legend, and simultaneously deals with the most relevant and pressing issues of the “real world”.

In this session,we plan to discuss stories of women’s bravery and the ways that this genre creates powerful literary women characters. Moreover, we want to focus on actual violence and the pressures women face today and how this is reflected in contemporary horror and fantasy  writing. What is the effect of cultural difference on horror and fantasy genres? Can works based on myths, legends and/or historical realities be regarded as local or global, and how do they come into being? Can one claim that male characters created by male authors dominate the fantasy genre? What are the basic differences between the roles and the functions of men and women characters in fantasy writing? Must women characters have “masculinity” to make their roles stronger and more important?

MSFAU Sedad Hakkı Eldem Auditorium
Moderator: Hazal Çamur; Speakers: Özlem Ertan, Işın Beril Tetik, Sacide Çobanoğlu