© 2020

The Politics of Horror

  • Damien K. Picariello

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxii
  2. Petrifying Politics

  3. Apocalypse and After

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 45-45
    2. Christie L. Maloyed, J. Kelton Williams
      Pages 47-57
  4. Ghoulish Games

  5. Terrifying Television

  6. Creepy Comics

  7. Nightmarish Nature

About this book


The Politics of Horror features contributions from scholars in a variety of fields—political science, English, communication studies, and others—that explore the connections between horror and politics. How might resources drawn from the study of politics inform our readings of, and conversations about, horror? In what ways might horror provide a useful lens through which to consider enduring questions in politics and political thought? And what insights might be drawn from horror as we consider contemporary political issues? In turning to horror, the contributors to this volume offer fresh provocations to inform a broad range of discussions of politics.

Damien K. Picariello is Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of South Carolina Sumter, USA.


partisanship partisanship horror films civic deliberation terrorism race comic studies film studies genre studies gender and politics eco-horror climate change psychological horror technology liberal politics Plato capitalism militarism queer politics apocalypse

Editors and affiliations

  • Damien K. Picariello
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceUniversity of South Carolina SumterSumterUSA

About the editors

Damien K. Picariello is Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of South Carolina Sumter, USA. He is also the author of Politics in Gotham: The Batman Universe and Political Thought (Palgrave Macmillan, 2019).

Bibliographic information


The Politics of Horror illustrates how horror is not simply a cinematic genre, but a framework or mode of representation that helps us diagnose our political neurosis. Exploring the range of our collective nightmares—from film and television to comics and live action role play—this collection illustrates how horror, the apocalyptic, and the uncanny are fraught yet valuable resources for making sense of the political.”

Casey Ryan Kelly, Director of Graduate Studies and Associate Professor, University of Nebraska, USA, and author of Apocalypse Man: The Death Drive and the Rhetoric of White Masculine Victimhood (2020)


“Picariello has compiled a fascinating collection of works, providing new insight as to the symbiotic relationship between horror media and the political landscape in the online age. As a die-hard student of frightening fiction, it comes as a welcome reminder of how the media we consume shapes the world we live in—making a compelling case for horror as the most relevant genre in modern entertainment.”

Tyler MacIntyre, Director of Tragedy Girls