LSE offers ‘Horror Literature’ as new senior elective for 2020-2021 school year


Illustration by Cheyenne Hernandez

Cheyenne Hernandez, Staff Writer & Graphic Designer

Soon-to-be seniors who have an interest in horror may be in for a scary good time next school year if they sign up for the new Horror Literature course, taught by English teacher Eric Holt.

Horror Literature will be offered as a senior elective, where students will be reading about, as the name suggests, horror.

“In Horror Lit., students will read, write about and discuss horror literature in all its forms  — from the gothic, to the realistic, to the weird, the historical to the modern,” Holt said.

So far, the reading list for Horror Lit. includes classics like Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein,” to modern works like Paul Trembley’s “The Cabin at the End of the World.”

“Early last year, I got the idea of proposing a Horror Literature class. I spent several months finding books and designing curriculum for the course before submitting it to the district office. The course was approved soon after, much to my delight,” Holt said.

Although Horror Lit. managed to be accepted as a new class, there were things to consider when it came to the horror element.

“Horror is a genre full of graphic content. Navigating what is and is not appropriate for a high school audience was a challenging, frustrating process,” Holt said. “Violence and mental illness make frequent appearances in horror literature. My goal is to present these controversial topics in a way that is sensitive to how they affect people in real life.” However, the grade level this class is for allows for more freedom in what can be taught. “Thankfully, because it is a senior elective, I have a fair amount of liberty as far as what texts I choose for the course.”

Although most current LSE juniors have already completed their schedules for their final year as a senior, it’s not too late to switch courses. Those interested in becoming a part of Horror Lit. can check with their counselor and request a switch anytime until the last few days before the 2020-2021 school year begins.

The LSE course guide does not appear to show Horror Lit. explicitly, but is instead titled, Senior Seminar: HL. Nevertheless, students can still meet with their counselors and ask to enroll in Horror Lit. if they’re interested.

Other than reading and writing, Holt hopes to arrange Skype calls with the authors of the books that are to be read in Horror Lit. as another feature of this class, and is excited about this upcoming course.

“It’s the class I wish I could have taken in high school, so I’m thrilled it now exists,” Holt said. “This class will be a blast  — but prepare to get spooked!”