What Are We Afraid Of?

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Event Info

Vengeful spirits, destructive sea monsters, and powerful witches—these threatening figures appear across time and cultures. Why? And what do they say about our common human fears?

As Halloween draws near, join Humanities Washington for a journey into what frightens us. Three scholars and storytellers will tell scary stories and discuss the similarities and differences in how their tales address human and cultural anxieties.

Hear Pacific Coast Indigenous stories, Scandinavian tales, and Mexican legends from Owen L. Oliver (author and educator), Lauren Poyer (assistant teaching professor at the University of Washington), and Nancy Salguero McKay (executive director of the Highline Heritage Museum).

The panelists will also discuss the purpose of frightening tales, and explore why—given how few people like to be afraid—do we love a scary story?

Registrants will receive a recipe for a special cocktail and mocktail to enjoy while watching the event!