Bringing the Text to Life
One of the oldest adages of journalism proclaims "If it bleeds, it leads." Blood and guts, disaster and mayhem, tragedy and terror have never failed to grab us by the throat and chokehold our attention. You would think that after all the evil of the 20th century -- two world wars, the Holocaust, Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Vietnam, Rwanda -- our thirst for images of darkness and death would be slackened.
Quite the contrary. In the past 10 years we have seen a rise in a fixation with the "Gothic" -- that literary and cultural tradition which ties us up to the bleak, the macabre, the violent, the horrific, the evil.
--We spend huge amounts of time and money trying to make ourselves feel secure from the rampant violence in our society ... and yet we delight in going to "slasher movies," and movies like Scream and Scream 2 are box-office hits.
--We bemoan the senseless murders and gang credos that are ruling our young people ... and yet we crank up the "gansta-rap" sound on our stereos.