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H.P. Lovecraft: Four Decades of Criticism

Edited by S.T. Joshi


Dust Jacket Text

     This anthology, spanning nearly forty years of criticism, embodies the wide range of opinions evoked by the writings of Howard Phillips Lovecraft. Originally published in pulp magazines, which in the early part of this century were the only market for fantasy fiction, H.P. Lovecraft’s works were not recognized by the literary world in his lifetime. After Lovecraft’s death, associates and fans published his work in book form, thus beginning his slow rise from obscurity. Since that time, critical acceptance of Lovecraft’s works has fluctuated greatly, from those who feel that his work is juvenile and undeserving of serious study to those who consider him to be another Poe.
     In addition to representing the ambivalent critical responses to Lovecraft’s writings, this volume also examines the literary influences that affected him, his poetry and essays, his work as a regional and local-color writer, and the evolution of his vast pseudo-mythology in both his writings and the writings of others, as well as his reactions to the political and economic development of his time.
     Above all, this volume is designed to present Lovecraft to the academic world which has virtually ignored him for forty years, capping his metamorphosis from a forgotten pulp writer to a brilliant fantaisiste with a worldwide following.


  • Preface
  • S.T. Joshi
  • H.P. Lovecraft: His Life and Work
  • Kenneth W. Faig, Jr. and S.T. Joshi
  • Lovecraft Criticism: A Study
  • S.T. Joshi
  • A Chronology of Selected Works by H.P. Lovecraft
  • S.T. Joshi
  • H.P. Lovecraft: An Appreciation
  • T. O. Mabbott
  • Tales of the Marvellous and the Ridiculous
  • Edmund Wilson
  • A Literary Copernicus
  • Fritz Leiber, Jr.
  • From The Supernatural in Fiction
  • Peter Penzoldt
  • The Cthulhu Mythos: A Study
  • George T. Wetzel
  • Some Notes on Cthulhuian Pseudobiblia
  • Edward Lauterbach
  • H.P. Lovecraft: Myth-Maker
  • Dirk W. Mosig
  • On the Literary Influences Which Shaped Lovecraft’s Works
  • J. Vernon Shea
  • Through Hyperspace with Brown Jenkin: Lovecraft’s Contribution to Speculative Fiction
  • Fritz Leiber, Jr.
  • The Influence of Vathek on H.P. Lovecraft’s The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath
  • Peter Cannon
  • Poe and Lovecraft
  • Robert Bloch
  • H.P. Lovecraft in Hawthornian Perspective
  • Peter Cannon
  • Facts in the Case of H.P. Lovecraft
  • Barton L. St. Armand
  • “The White Ship”: A Psychological Odyssey
  • Dirk W. Mosig
  • Lovecraft and the Cosmic Quality in Fiction
  • Richard L. Tierney
  • Dystopia as Utopia: Howard Phillips Lovecraft and the Unknown Content of American Horror Literature
  • Paul Buhle
  • A Parenthesis on Lovecraft as Poet
  • Winfield Townley Scott
  • A Lovecraftian Nightmare
  • R. Boerem
  • The Continuity of the Fungi from Yuggoth
  • R. Boerem
  • To Howard Phillips Lovecraft
  • Clark Ashton Smith

Bibliographic Information

H.P. Lovecraft: Four Decades of Criticism. Edited by S.T. Joshi. Athens, OH: Ohio State University Press; 1980; ISBN 0-8214-0442-3 (cloth), 0-8214-0577-2 (paper).

Purchasing This Book

This book may be purchased in hardcover from Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble or in paperback from Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble.

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