In his 2002 horror film, writer-director Neil Marshall (who is currently helming the Hellboy reboot) has men dealing with their identities in the most masculine of realms, the primitive woods. Over the course of the movie’s 105-minute runtime, a ho-hum military exercise turns into a balls-to-the-wall fight wherein multiple elements of male identity are exposed to the moonlight. In that exposure, some of those gendered elements become monstrous on-screen and ruminate on what it means to be a man.
Sometime between 1780 and 1782, the Italian artist Clemente Susini created the first Anatomical Venus: A life-sized, nude, wax woman, with human hair brushed down over her shoulders, a pearl necklace clasped around her neck, and her lips permanently parted. Students of anatomy could unhook the hinge along her torso and swing the skin-colored door out to reveal seven articulated layers of plasticine organs. Here was an alternative to dissecting corpses. Instead of decaying flesh, a beautiful facsimile of a woman with pieces you could remove, threaded muscle around bone, and a stone-sized fetus tucked into the bottom layer.
Dawn Wilcox adds more names to her list every day. Sometimes as many as 50.
From her home in a quiet cul de sac in Plano, Texas, Wilcox runs Women Count USA – a project honoring victims of what she believes to be America’s unseen crisis: femicide.
Wilcox has spent much of the past two years scouring online news stories and social media for reports on women and girls killed by men in the US. She compiles their names in a publicly available spreadsheet and shares details about their lives and deaths with nearly 6,000 people on the Women Count USA Facebook page.
Horror Scholar Journal Vol. 1 is the brainchild of Celia Abate, a journalist who wanted a space for media academics to post their works. Not satisfied with the traditional, mainstream methods of getting her work to the masses and seeing other writers face rejection despite the quality of their work, she set out to make her own publication.
It’s a simple Hollywood story, really. Boy meets girl. Boy has a secret. Boy reveals secret to girl. Boy breaks up with girl “to protect her.” Girl starts dating someone else (someone worse than boy—she’s not really that into it). Boy gets jealous and messes everything up. Boy gets back together with girl because they’re “endgame.”
In 1989 director Mary Lambert brought Stephen King’s celebrated bestseller “Pet Sematary” to the big screen, spinning its tragic tale of grief gone wrong into a box-office hit that cemented a terrifying toddler, a cat named Church and lines like, “Sometimes dead is better” into the annals of horror history.
Have any conversation with a witch today about where they go for their magical inspiration and they’re more than likely going to namedrop The Hoodwitch. The site for “everyday magick for the modern mystic,” The Hoodwitch offers free meditations, rituals and horoscopes alongside a carefully curated selection of crystals, herbal smudges, books, and tarot cards for everyone from beginners to full-on occultists. Bri Luna, a seasoned Bruja, and the founder and Creative Director of the site started her online destination for all things mystical over five years ago and has since grown it into a company that operates both URL and IRL.
The video for Princess Nokia’s “Brujas” opens with a striking yet intimate visual: A group of brown women clad in all-white wade in a body of water, tightly interlocking hands against the horizon of a gloomy sky. An indigenous song scores the cinematic scene as the camera hones in on a single figure veiled in blue, a reference to Yemayá, the ruler of the seas in Yoruba and Santería religions.
Then, the video cuts. The women reappear on screen—but this time, they’re modern-day brujas performing a seance in the woods.
Brujería, the Spanish language word for “witchcraft,” is typically used to refer to various spiritual practices that have been used by African, Caribbean, and indigenous Latin American populations for centuries. The West-African Yoruba religion, for instance, is estimated by some anthropologists to have been practiced for thousands of years. And Santería (also known as Lucumi) is an Afro-Cuban religion that took shape alongside the rise of Spanish colonization—and the arrival of Roman Catholicism—in Latin America in the 15th and 16th centuries. Today, brujería—and its accompanying bruja (Spanish for witch) title—are being taken up by a growing community of primarily Latinx women and femmes who want to tap into the mysticism of their heritage, often sharing images of their practice through social media or incorporating bruja culture into their creative pursuits.
Whether you believe the Fox sisters possessed supernatural powers or were masters of deception, one thing is for sure. What began as a rapping on the wall quickly became fame & fortune. Spiritualism was at its height & provided a platform for women to speak out. Death & the Maiden’s Sarah Chavez explains that women became influential, powerful and financially independent for the first time in America, all because they could supposedly speak to the dead.