Event Title

Unrested Souls: A Look at Fear, Ghost Stories, and Hauntings in Premodern London

Presenter Information

Elena Schreiner, Colby CollegeFollow

Location

Diamond 344

Start Date

30-4-2015 2:10 PM

End Date

30-4-2015 2:55 PM

Project Type

Presentation

Description

Ghost stories and tales of hauntings have been powerful conjurers of fear for centuries, and demonstrate the human fascination and horror with the undead. The belief or interest in the idea of ghosts and their chilling nature highlights many significant aspects of humans, which include their draw to the frightening and morbid, as well as their constant need to answer the question of what happens to people after they die. Perhaps the most driving force behind fear is the unknown, so it comes as no surprise the hair-raising and captivating appeal of ghosts, death, and the undead, as some of the most interesting yet unanswerable mysteries of the world. By exploring the evolution of the ghost story from the Middle Ages to the Victorian Age, with a specific focus on London, as well as navigating accounts of ghost sightings with regard to the power of fear and the human imagination, this paper will attempt to pinpoint why ghosts are so frightening to humans. Studying ghosts can perhaps shine some light on why human fear and interest are so closely linked, and why humans are so drawn to the unknown, and the undead.

Faculty Sponsor

Larissa Taylor

Sponsoring Department

Colby College. History Dept.

CLAS Field of Study

Social Sciences

Event Website

http://www.colby.edu/clas

ID

1316

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Apr 30th, 2:10 PM Apr 30th, 2:55 PM

Unrested Souls: A Look at Fear, Ghost Stories, and Hauntings in Premodern London

Diamond 344

Ghost stories and tales of hauntings have been powerful conjurers of fear for centuries, and demonstrate the human fascination and horror with the undead. The belief or interest in the idea of ghosts and their chilling nature highlights many significant aspects of humans, which include their draw to the frightening and morbid, as well as their constant need to answer the question of what happens to people after they die. Perhaps the most driving force behind fear is the unknown, so it comes as no surprise the hair-raising and captivating appeal of ghosts, death, and the undead, as some of the most interesting yet unanswerable mysteries of the world. By exploring the evolution of the ghost story from the Middle Ages to the Victorian Age, with a specific focus on London, as well as navigating accounts of ghost sightings with regard to the power of fear and the human imagination, this paper will attempt to pinpoint why ghosts are so frightening to humans. Studying ghosts can perhaps shine some light on why human fear and interest are so closely linked, and why humans are so drawn to the unknown, and the undead.

http://digitalcommons.colby.edu/clas/2015/program/320