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The Crucible of Goodness: Modern Horror as a Vehicle for the Christian Worldview

Posted on Jul 1, 2013 by in Abstracts | 0 comments

Megan DipoMegan Dipo
University of Utah Member ΦΑΘ-AP
Published in Utah Historical Review, Vol III.

The horror genre has undergone drastic changes in the last two hundred years. Its landscape has transformed from brooding Gothic castles and haunted family drama and intrigue to the unfathomable realms of space, and the endless nothingness of evil incarnate. Modern horror in particular reveals the psyche of current human anxieties and mindsets, and how radically these mindsets differ from those of histories past. Underlying it all, unbeknownst to most fans of the genre, is a distinct and absolutely Christian origin; indeed, this paper will present argument that modern horror as it exists would never be possible without the influence of Christianity’s unique and pervasive worldview, and the differences that exist therein from earlier pagan mythos. It will analyze particular current releases in literature and film, and show how modern horror is expressing, expanding and continuing the longevity of Christian attitudes towards death, evil-as-nothingness, anti-pagan sentiment, and the separation of man not only from the center of his universe, but from the very numinous characteristics of existence.

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Megan Dipo is an undergraduate at the University of Utah, pursuing degrees in History and Religious Studies, along with a minor in Classical Civilization. She is a member of the Alpha Rho chapter of Phi Alpha Theta.

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