I’ll be the first to brand myself a weenie when it comes to spooky stuff, but relatively recently, I’ve become more fascinated with the horror genre. I think it’s the psychological aspect of it that intrigues me. Why do we fear what we fear? What part of what scares us is rooted in primal, evolutionary mechanisms, and how much is learned? How do different cultures manifest their anxieties?
One thing’s for sure: horror has been around as long as we’ve been telling stories. This much becomes evident in the mesmerizing video by Diego Carrera called “A History of Horror,” which chronicles some of cinema’s most iconic scares from the advent of film to present day. It’s fascinating to watch the progression of frights from pure spectacle to more sophisticated psychological horror.
We use art and pop culture as a means of discussing and understanding the questions and fears that plague us. And although entries in the horror genre are often placed on a lower rung of the proverbial pop culture ladder, we can use these works as a means to explore the recesses of our cultural consciousness. Recent flicks like It Follows and The Witch have deftly subverted and redefined genre conventions, proving that there is still much to explore within this familiar realm.
Plus, it’s just fun to be spooked sometimes.