The Truth Is in Here

Religion and media scholar Lynn Schofield Clark writing on V at Trans/Missions:

It would be easy for journalists to write about the popularity of the paranormal as a simple horse-race to win ratings and box office returns.  But a more interesting story is how myths of the paranormal and supernatural have shifted—from a fear of being consumed (think Bram Stoker’s Dracula) to the fear that we’re being duped misguided, un-gifted or otherwise rendered inferior. At its heart, our interest in the paranormal is about coming to terms with the fact that we have less control over things than we thought we did.  This also means we need to be extra suspicious of anyone who jumps a little too quickly at the chance to define reality for the rest of us.  It’s post-9/11 paranoia, but it recognizes that the source of our problems might be not be “out there” but right here in our midst.

Jeff Sharlet is a founding editor of Killing the Buddha, coauthor with Peter Manseau of Killing the Buddha: A Heretic's Bible (2004) and co-editor of Believer, Beware (2009). Sharlet is also the author of Sweet Heaven When I Die, (2011), C Street, (2010), and the New York Times bestseller The Family (2008).