Bordwell, David, and Kristin Thompson. Film Art: An Introduction. 10th ed. New York: McGraw Hill, 2013.
This textbook includes an entire section of a chapter devoted to the history of the horror genre, giving special attention to both the early German Expressionist films of the silent era as well as the classic Universal monster films. This portion pays particular attention to form, specifically the stylistic and compositional characteristics of these sorts of films. A later section of the book is used to explain the rise of German Expressionism not in the context of its genre, but in the cultural and socioeconomic conditions of Germany post WW1.
Edwards, Kyle. “Morals, Markets, and ‘Horror Pictures’: The Rise of Universal Pictures and the Hollywood Production Code.” Film & History: An Interdisciplinary Journal 42.2 (2012): 23-37.
This article focuses on three of Universal’s first horror movies and their correspondence with the Studio Relations Committee as the studio strove to create compelling stories while staying within the confines of the Hollywood Production Code. Frankenstein is highlighted to have been one of the first films to have push-back from censors on account of its “gruesome” content and ability to “instill ‘horror’ into a prospective audience.”
Roberts, Russell. “Frankenstein Films.” The Thirties in America. Ed. Tandy Lewis Thomas. 3 vols. Salem Press, 2011.
This article gives concise summaries of both Frankenstein (1931) and its first sequel, Bride of Frankenstein (1935). It notes how the successful first film helped save Universal Pictures from financial trouble and made stars out of many of its cast members. Both films are also analyzed for their similarities and differences, and their own impacts on the horror film genre.