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Hybrid genre

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A hybrid genre is a literary or film genre that blends themes and elements from two or more different genres. Works in hybrid genres are also referred to as cross-genre, multi-genre, mixed genre, or fusion genre. The Dictionary of Media and Communication describes hybrid genre as "the combination of two or more genres", which may combine elements of more than one genre and/or which may "cut across categories such as fact and fiction".[1] Some such sub-genres have acquired their own specialised names, such as comedy drama, romantic comedy ("rom-com"), horror Western, and docudrama.

Hybrid genres are a longstanding element in the fictional process. An early example is William Blake's Marriage of Heaven and Hell, with its blend of poetry, prose, and engravings.[2]



In contemporary literature, Dimitris Lyacos's trilogy Poena Damni combines fictional prose with drama and poetry in a multilayered narrative developing through the different characters of the work.[3]

Many contemporary women of color have published cross-genre works, including Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Giannina Braschi, Guadalupe Nettel, and Bhanu Kapil.[4] Giannina Braschi creates linguistic and structural hybrids of comic fantasy and tragic comedy in Spanish, Spanglish, and English prose and poetry.[5][6] Carmen Maria Machado mixes psychological realism and science fiction with both humor and elements of gothic horror.[7]

Dean Koontz considers himself a cross-genre writer, not a horror writer: "I write cross-genre books-suspense mixed with love story, with humor, sometimes with two tablespoons of science fiction, sometimes with a pinch of horror, sometimes with a sprinkle of paprika..."[8]


Examples of hybrid genre films include:

List of named hybrid genres[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Hybrid genre". A Dictionary of Media and Communication. 22 February 1999. Retrieved 21 July 2023 – via Oxford Reference.
  2. ^ M. Singer/W. Walker, Bending Genre (2013) p. 21-2
  3. ^ "Reviews: Z213: Exit by Dimitris Lyacos". Write From Wrong Literary Magazine. Writefromwrongmag.wordpress.com. 14 March 2011. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  4. ^ "How I Learned To Love Experimental Fiction As A Brown Girl By Seeking Out Books By Women Of Color". Bustle. 25 January 2019. Retrieved 11 October 2020.
  5. ^ ""What to Read Now: Mixed-Genre Literature," Giannina Braschi". World Literature Today. 6 August 2012. Retrieved 11 October 2020.
  6. ^ Marting, Diane E. (2010). "New/Nueva York in Giannina Braschi's "Poetic Egg": Fragile Identity, Postmodernism, and Globalization". The Global South. 4 (1): 167–182. doi:10.2979/gso.2010.4.1.167. ISSN 1932-8648. JSTOR 10.2979/gso.2010.4.1.167.
  7. ^ "13 Latina Fantasy Books For the Sci-Fi Lover in Your Life". Fierce. 9 January 2019. Retrieved 11 October 2020.
  8. ^ Koontz, Dean. "Afterword", Lightning, G.P. Putnam's Sons hardcover edition, January 1988. Berkley Publishing Group, mass market edition, May 1989. p. 360
  9. ^ a b c d e f "10 essential films that define genre-hybridity". Far Out Magazine. 4 August 2022. Retrieved 21 July 2023.
  10. ^ Ding, Kevin (13 July 2017). "The 20 Best Genre-Hybrid Movies of The 21st Century (1)". Taste of Cinema. Retrieved 21 July 2023.
  11. ^ a b Ding, Kevin (13 July 2017). "The 20 Best Genre-Hybrid Movies of The 21st Century (3)". Taste of Cinema. Retrieved 21 July 2023.
  12. ^ a b Ding, Kevin (13 July 2017). "The 20 Best Genre-Hybrid Movies of The 21st Century (2)". Taste of Cinema. Retrieved 21 July 2023.
  13. ^ "When crime meets fantasy in fiction". the Guardian. 15 May 2014. Retrieved 18 February 2022.

Further reading[edit]

  • Diane P. Freedman, An Alchemy of Genres (1997)