Titles of Interest – Dangerous Games: What the Moral Panic over Role-Playing Games Says about Play, Religion, and Imagined Worlds
Dangerous Games: What the Moral Panic over Role-Playing Games Says about Play, Religion, and Imagined Worlds (University of California Press, 2015), by Joseph P. Laycock. The 1980s saw the peak of a moral panic over fantasy role-playing games such as Dungeons and Dragons. A coalition of moral entrepreneurs that included the Christian Right, psychologists, and […]
Fandom and Religion: An international, inter-disciplinary conference University of Leicester (UK) · 28th – 30th July 2015 A conference exploring interactions between religion and popular culture. How does fandom work? Has fandom replaced or become a form of religion? This event will provide opportunity for participants to explore these and other questions about popular culture […]
I finally had a chance to watch the first three episodes of The Strain after recording them. I am a big fan of Guillermo del Toro, including the material he produces. The television series is, of course, based on the 2009 novel by del Toro and Chuck Hogan. It incorporates some of the vampire conceptions […]
Virtually Sacred: Myth and Meaning in World of Warcraft and Second Life by Robert M. Geraci (Oxford University Press, 2014). Millions of users have taken up residence in virtual worlds, and in those worlds they find opportunities to revisit and rewrite their religious lives. Robert M. Geraci argues that virtual worlds and video games have […]
Carl Rosenberg, a reader of this blog, made me aware of an interesting facet of the 22nd Toronto Jewish Film Festival. It features a section on horror titled “The Search for a Jewish Horror Film: Golems, Dybbuks and Other Movie Monsters.” This is described as follows and features the following films: With a series of […]
The Huffington Post recently featured an essay discussing the forthcoming horror film Jinn. The interesting thing about the piece is that it comes from the Religious News Service, authored by Omar Sacirbey, and HuffPo describes the film with the title “‘Jinn’ Horror Movie Features Elements of Muslim Folklore, Interfaith Themes.” When these elements come together […]
I was fortunate to be a guest at Cinefantastique Online with their Spotlight Podcast 5-13.1 with the discussion of NOAH. I commented on the film as a piece of cinema, and was also able to provide some thoughts on interpreting biblical texts and how this relates to religious communities and film artistry. Listen here.
Brown University is presenting an upcoming conference titled “Beasts Monsters, and the Fantastic in the Religious Imagination.” The schedule from the website: Friday, February 28, 2014 Keynote Address 6:30-7:30pm Dinner Reception 7:30pm Saturday, March 1, 2014 Breakfast 8am-9am I. Morning Session: Doing Things with Demons 9am-10:45am “When a Bad Being Does Good Things: The Demon […]
Guillermo del Toro is one of the most interesting contemporary people working in genre. He brings a philosophical, mythical, and religious depth to reflection on the material as revealed in these video clips.
Previously I have written about Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978) and suggested that it may contain commentary on the religious right. My thinking found some connection to an interview with the film’s director, Philip Kaufman, by Michael Doyle in the September 2013 issue of Rue Morgue magazine. It is found on pages 21-22: Were […]