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Peter Gelman wrote about the Fantastic. (


"Fantastic" is capitalised throughout, as is other genres. This seems unusual. Any thoughts? Notinasnaid 12:28, 7 Feb 2005 (UTC)

This is very unusual. In my experience 'fantastic' is not capitalised when referring to genre. S.H.C. Etheridge 19:48, 3 Dec 2005 (GMT)

Toderov, Freud[edit]

Some reference should really be made to the work of individuals attempting to define the genre, such as Sigmund Freud's psychoanalytical approach and Tzvetan Todorov's more abstract literary-critical approach. S.H.C. Etheridge 20:29, 3 Dec 2005 (UTC)

Fantastic authors or fantastic stories?[edit]

The original text is misleading when it says:

  • "Examples of writers of Fantastic literature include E.T.A. Hoffmann, Nikolai Gogol, Oscar Wilde, Mikhail Bulgakov, Abram Tertz, and Bernard Malamud"

This implies that the list that follows is of writers who exclusively or mainly wrote pieces in the fantastic genre. It would be preferable to cite particular works when referring to authors.

This list could also be expanded to include Guy de Maupassant (assorted works), Théophile Gautier (La Cafetière), Alphonse Daudet (L'Homme à la cervelle d'or), Edgar Allen Poe (The Black Cat), and others. S.H.C. Etheridge 20:23, 3 December 2005 (UTC)


Any thought on including Todorov's definition from his book "The Fantastic"? (paraphrased) "First, the text must force the reader to consider the world of the characters as real and existing, as well as oblige the reader to hesitate between a natural and supernatural explanation of the text's contents. Secondly, the reader must reject allegorical and 'poetic' interpretations of the text. A third, optional constraint is that the hesitation or ambivalence regarding a real or supernatural explanation of the text's events may be experienced by a character in the text."

I second that, I just ordered the book, waiting for it to arrive. --Jahsonic 20:41, 8 May 2006 (UTC)

More examples[edit]

I'm not sure so who is, might add the movie Hearts in Atlantis (film) to the list ! Maybe the novel too, but i havent read that.

Hi, Im sorry I never actually edit these things, but I just dont understand why someone would post incorrect information on a resource like this. Anyways, whoever decided to write about Todorov's Fantastic should have read his book Introduction a la litterature fantastique The uncanny does not fall under the genre of the fantastic. Firstly the fantastic, says Todorov, falls on the border of two genres: the marvelous and the uncanny. Secondly, the fantastic is only the fantastic as long as the hesitation exists. The fantastic will always end when the reader makes the decision whether or not he will use an explanation grounded in the laws of nature to account for the phenominality or grounded in new supernatural laws. If he does the former, then it is uncanny (the article says the exact opposite here!). There is much more that needs to be corrected in this article, and I would discourage relying on it. -----Amye

I totally agree with the comment above. The section referring to Todorov's interpretation of the fantastic is utterly false and misleading. "Todorov compares this with two other ideas: The Uncanny, wherein the phenomenon turns out to have a rational explanation such as in the Gothic works of Ann Radcliffe; or the Marvellous, where there truly is a supernatural explanation for the phenomenon." - is totally incorrect!!! (as Amye points out above) S.H.C. Etheridge 12:43, 25 February 2008 (UTC)

In addition, there is at least one work Todorov himself describes as being truly "fantastic": Turn of the Screw. [jfisher3529] 9:45, 24, April — Preceding unsigned comment added by Jfisher3529 (talkcontribs) 02:46, 25 April 2012 (UTC)

Suggestions for external links[edit]

The Temple of Dagon - H.P. Lovecraft and the Cthulhu Mythos

Fantastic Horror - Original Works of Disturbing Imagination —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 01:56, 5 April 2007 (UTC).

Suggestions for categories[edit]

I suggest splitting the fantastic structurally similar to Todorov's novel into separate categories for clarification to the reader. --Toobulkeh (talk) 16:40, 24 February 2010 (UTC)


Obviously a film in the fantstic genre, as it is obviously a heist film - need to find cast iron refernece as the below is being constantly deleted

  • I don't think anything is "obvious" here. First of all, this is a poorly sourced article about a literary genre, not film. Second, there are many things wrong with this claim and the use of this barely RS, which is really a blog. Let's take a look:
  1. The reference you give above is "Rhodes, Julia 'An Exploration into the Complexities of the Human Mind Results in the Best Film of 2010' California Literary Review, July 2010." Rhodes appears to be a blogger who posted a review of the film in question here. Disputed claims require tighter sourcing and highly reliable sources to begin with, but let's took at her claims:
  2. Looking at the blog review, we see the word "fantastic" used twice. In (3) and (4) I provide the two examples in full with the word highlighted from the source:
  3. Example: "Editor Lee Smith fashioned a movie whose pacing speeds the heart and leaves you breathless; a few jarring cuts may distract the viewer, but that’s purposeful. Hans Zimmer, whose music for The Dark Knight helped cement that film as one of the best in the last decade, returned to create an equally gorgeous and thrumming score that buffets the film’s fantastic events."
  4. Example: "Those early filmmakers may not have possessed modern technology, but they understood one thing: film is a fantastic and unreal medium, a place in which the viewer can escape everyday life and enter a whole other world where nothing is impossible."
  5. I fail to see how Rhodes is using the word "fantastic" to refer to a literary genre.
  6. In the first instance (3) Rhodes uses "fantastic" to mean "extraordinarily good; used especially as intensifiers; exceedingly or unbelievably great; existing in fancy only; extravagantly fanciful or ludicrously odd". I see no direct reference to a genre here.
  7. In the second example (4) Rhodes refers to the medium of film as a whole, not to a specific work, which alludes to the allegory of the filmmaker as a dream-maker. I fail to see any reference to Todorov or his literary genre.
  8. It is important for editors to use sources explicitly, and to avoid interpretations. A question has been posed: Is the film Inception an example of the literary genre of the "fantastic"? Unless a good source directly addresses this question, we can't interpret sources to support an answer. Viriditas (talk) 00:59, 12 August 2010 (UTC)

The fantastic is not just a literary genre. The is work by Todorov is not restrained to literature - it is a genre in art as a whole and can be found in painting as well as film, literature and television.. Moreover there are well established Fantastic Film Festivals - Amsterdam (in 26th year, Brussels (, Korean (in 14th year, and Sitges ( Fantastic Film festivals.

I agree with your points about the citation used - which is when considering it I removed it to this discussion page. However I still ascertain that it is within this genre -and if we were to follow this example we would have to remove all the works of literature quoted as they also do not have citations. I think reading the article on the fantastic it is very obvious that the film falls within this genre - but as you are very passionate about this I am happy to leave it here until someone writes the fact in a way that I can use as a citation Kunchan (talk) 01:05, 12 August 2010 (UTC)

BTW I do not think Rhodes uses the word fantastic to mean exceedingly good - this comes from a literary journal - and the author will know of this term. 'Exceedingly good ' events - no that does not make sense. But I suppose neither you nor I will know for sure.

(I spell checked your comments for you, check the edit history) Regarding the use of the term, in the former (3) example, she's using it as an attributive adjective. The "events" she's talking about are discussed in the article, such as the depiction of "stunningly malleable cityscapes and midair fight scenes underscored by throbbing orchestral music". This is what "fantastic" refers to here (3), and in this context, the "existing in fancy only [and] the extravagantly fanciful or ludicrously odd" makes sense. The problem with the latter example (4) is that it refers to film as a medium in general, and to early films and filmmakers in particular. Viriditas (talk) 02:01, 12 August 2010 (UTC)


This article has been vandalised, please could an administrator revert it by two versions? The Yowser (talk) 16:28, 22 November 2010 (UTC)

Origin of the term[edit]

"The term was originated in the structuralist theory of critic Tzvetan Todorov in his work The Fantastic."

That's ludicrous! It's merely a transcription of the french word "fantastique". See:

Todorov used the word "fantastique" (not as a noun, though, as I recall; he always used it as an adjective), but he did'nt coined it, it's more than a century old. Did Richard Howard, his american translator, introduce the term in English? Maybe, I don't know. Todorov didn't. "The term was originated in a translation by Richard Howard of Tzvetan Todorov's essay 'Introduction à la littérature fantastique', edited in English as 'The Fantastic: A Structural Approach to a Literary Genre'". That's more it, I think.
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