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Edited by Martin F. Norden

The popular media of film and television surround us daily with images of evil - images that have often gone critically unexamined. In the belief that people in ever-increasing numbers are turning to the media for their understanding of evil, this lively and provocative collection of essays addresses the changing representation of evil in a broad spectrum of films and television programmes. Written in refreshingly accessible and de-jargonised prose, the essays bring to bear a variety of philosophical and critical perspectives on works ranging from the cinema of famed director Alfred Hitchcock and the preternatural horror films Halloween and Friday the 13th to the understated documentary Human Remains and the television coverage of the immediate post-9/11 period. The Changing Face of Evil in Film and Television is for anyone interested in the moving-image representation of that pervasive yet highly misunderstood thing we call evil.

Series:

Martin F. Norden

Taking their cue from such literary texts as the Bible, Shakespeare’s Richard III, Melville’s Moby-Dick, and Barrie’s Peter Pan, filmmakers and TV producers have often associated evil with disability in their works. This conflation has led to a particularly odious stereotype: the “Obsessive Avenger,” a character (almost always an adult male) who in the name of revenge relentlessly pursues those he holds responsible for his disablement, some other moral-code violation, or both. Appearing in numerous productions throughout the history of moving-image media, this monomaniacal figure reinforces mainstream society’s most deeply entrenched negative beliefs about disabled people. In the hope of exposing the forces behind this most insidious of disability-related stereotypes and the ways it has been received, the current chapter examines the film/TV linkage of disability and evil through the lens of Freud’s “The Uncanny” and related works.

Series:

Edited by Martin F. Norden