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LIT 4930: Florida Lit and Culture

Class 24: Fearsome Creatures

    Fleming's Fearsome Creatures
    Post 12 group B, Response Group A

Class Objectives:

    Discuss animals and place in Florida

    Practice Postcards

Notes and Discussion Questions:

    After reading through much of the literature on Florida, it became apparent to me that animals were central to a representation of this place, and further that we needed to have a deeper understanding of animals in order to analyze and assess our ecological relationship in Florida.

    Fearsome Creatures: Why does this work want to scare its readers? What is scary about it? What is monstrous?

    By constructing the monstrous, Fleming invokes norms and borders. In what ways does this work in the interstices of place? Of genre? How are the borders negotiated?

    I am intrigued by the use of the map at the opening of the book. What function does this serve? What is being mapped?

    What might it mean that part of the proceeds from this work will be donated to nonprofit environmental preservation groups in Florida? Is there an environmental subtext?

    Note the way the individual stories are located in place. Choose one and analyze the construction of place.

    Note the way the stories weave history and fantasy and horror. What is the effect?

    What is the reader's relationship to the creatures in these stories? Does the collection suggest commonalities about animal-human relations? About the animal-human continuum?

    Does this work disrupt, interrupt, or erupt (to borrow Janz's terms) ideas of Florida as a place? If so, how?

    How does the collection represent / interrogate the violence of animals?

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