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American Horror Story and Philosophy 

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ISBN 978-0-8126-9972-2


xii + 226 pages


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American Horror Story and Philosophy

Life Is But a Nightmare

Edited by Richard Greene and Rachel Robison-Greene
Volume 114 in the Popular Culture and Philosophy® series

Seventeen philosophers of occult lore have conspired to prepare a simmering cauldron of tasty yet toxic intellectual morsels. This volume gives us astounding new insights into the blood-curdling yet endlessly addictive TV show American Horror Story.

American Horror Story and Philosophy shows us the philosophical significance of the alluring terrors upon which this addictive TV show is based—and it shows us the ways in which American Horror Story can help us interpret our own stories. Be of like mind! Join us!”

—Darci Doll, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Delta College, Michigan

 “The dead do tell tales. Gothic tales on steroids— it’s an uncanny world after all. American Horror Story and Philosophy truly is to die for. It masses the tropes and immerses the reader in sagas of vampires, specters, witches, and zombies. And what would au currant horror be without a crazed clown or two?”

—Ron Hirschbein, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, California State University, Chico

 “With a delightfully insane contemplation of demonic possession, American Horror Story and Philosophy routinely captures the essence of harrowing secrets that drives a terrific and terrible truth knocking on all of our doors!”

—Brian A. Kinnaird, Chair of Criminal Justice, Bethany College

“Much to the surprise of many thoughtful people, it turns out that demons, ghosts, zombies, and vampires actually can teach us quite a bit about the real world. American Horror Story and Philosophy shows us how to think about big-picture issues. It’s what good philosophy does. Whether it’s ethics, evil, the human condition, or even something as grandiose as the meaning of life, it’s scary how much fine philosophy is buried inside this highly entertaining volume.”

—Jack Bowen, author of If You Can Read This: The Philosophy of Bumper Stickers and The Dream Weaver: One Boy’s Journey Through the Landscape of Reality

 “What constitutes personal identity over time? Are there souls that exist separate from bodies? What can we say about demons? The Devil? God? What’s the true nature of evil? You might not be pondering these fairly deep questions while watching episodes of American Horror Story, but after you read this book, you won’t be able to help but reflect upon them. And your appreciation for this profound show will grow exponentially, I assure you.”

 —Robert Arp, author of 1001 Ideas that Changed the Way We Think

Richard Greene is professor of philosophy at Weber State University and executive chair of the Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl. Among the many books he has co-edited are Mr. Robot and Philosophy: Beyond Good and Evil Corp (2017) and Orphan Black and Philosophy: Grand Theft DNA (2016).

 Rachel Robison-Greene has co-edited Peanuts and Philosophy: You’re a Wise Man, Charlie Brown! (2017) and The Princess Bride and Philosophy: Inconceivable! (2016).

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