Cecilia Abate is the brain behind Horror Scholar, an academic horror project aimed at engaging horror fans and encouraging critical thinking. Her current biggest academic project is the season-by-season mapping of sexual violence in American Horror Story, which is the only comprehensive data on sexual violence on that show to date. Interested parties can follow the project at http://www.facebook.com/horrorscholar, or http://www.twitter.com/scholarhorror
1) what is horror?
Horror is the expression of and engagement with our fears. It is an individual and personal experience with our want to survive.
2) why horror?
I gravitate towards horror because it can touch a range of human emotions. I think it’s healthy to work out your fear reflexes and have that conversation with yourself—what scares me? Why? It’s a creative, colorful, and interesting genre that still has a lot of growing to do.
3) where do you see horror going?
Hopefully horror is going in a direction where it embraces smaller names & projects, and not just remakes of old material — I think as new blood comes into the genre, it’s going to continually get more self aware and socially aware, and bring along with it new perspectives and stories that need to be told. It stands to be freshened and diversified, and that’s where it’s headed.