The Shining And It By Stephen King Analysis

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Stephen King’s novels The Shining and It are incredible examples of the exploitation of children in the 20th century horror-gothic genre. As American cultural historian David Skal notes, King’s novels “brim with fantasies of sacrificial children” (1993: 362). In The Shining and It, children play a significant role as victims who are being threatened by terrifying monsters. These monsters take very different forms but are nonetheless horrifying. The presence of the child in King’s novels must be understood in the context of his representation of the collapse of the American family.
Clearly, in general, children are not able to resist misrepresentation and exploitation. This innocence and defenselessness is what makes the use of children in
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Jack Torrance is obsessed with his frustrations as his alcoholism and violent tendencies destroy his teaching career and his family. Initially, King insists that Jack is responsible for the impending demise of his life and family but The Shining becomes ambivalent and almost cryptic on the subject of who to blame. Jack becomes an alcoholic at high school under the stress of the abuse inflicted by his father on him and his family. Anyways, for King, Jack’s weaknesses are easy access into his being used by the evil entity that possesses him, rather than the main reason for his demise and ultimate death. This entity lives in the Overlook Hotel, where Jack is employed as winter caretaker. Snowbound for months, the Torrances (Jack, Wendy and their five-year-old son Danny) must face possession as Danny realizes that he is the target of a destructive, supernatural …show more content…
“By placing Danny and Jack in the arena of historically entrenched male homosocial relations, King documents the anxiety over this forced male proximity, an anxiety that gradually yields psychic dissolution and collapse.” The collapse of the father is caused by his subconscious desire for his male child and seeing as though that desire should never be fulfilled, this leads to hatred for the child. While Bruhm could be right, his thesis that the relationships between men are distorted by their problems acknowledging basic homoerotic impulses is more of a criticism of King as opposed to a means from which his ideas came. The “sickness” of the text, Bruhm hints is derived from Jack’s inability to acknowledge that he desires Danny, and is implying that better awareness of these would have prevented the whole situation. Additionally, he hints that King may have many things in common with Jack. Bruhm proposes reaching a societal stage in which all men are in aware of and in touch with all of their feelings. This could indeed protect children from domestic violence, but we have no way of knowing how men would behave if they were actually aware of the sexuality involved in fatherhood. In contemporary American society, Bruhm’s utopian future of “well adjusted” men is not likely or

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