Happy Halloween!


First, you’ll want to brush up on the history of Halloween. Then check out all of the great new posts this week if you haven’t already!

The gothic and the occult have a deep history in our literary tradition: Andrew McCann examines the popular rise of occult writing as the 19th century brought about commercial literature, and Gail Turley Houston muses on the cultural immortality of Dracula.

The Cambridge History of Magic and Witchcraft in the West is a treasure trove of information on the history and practice of witchcraft: read about how the perception of witchcraft has taken shape in the modern world (and what it means today) and the way witchcraft was brought to light through jokes, even in the medieval period.

Beyond Belief author Martin Bridgstock on the problem with believing in ghosts.

Kevin J. Hayes, editor of The Cambridge Companion to Edgar Allan Poe, offers a spooky recommendation from the holiday’s favorite poet.

Mummies aren’t all bloodstained gauze and walking dead: they’re an important resource for understanding daily life and rituals in ancient cultures. Rosalie David examines mummies with modern technology to bring us valuable information about the ancient Egyptians.

Christopher Mackay describes the challenge of translating the Malleus Malleficarum, the most important and authoritative medieval text on witchcraft.

Everything you ever wanted to know about spiders. And there’s also a clip from Arachnaphobia, because hey, it’s Halloween.

Don’t forget to check out all of our Cambridge Halloween posts, and have the scariest, spookiest, happiest Halloween.


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