Nighmarish Fantasy and Gruesome History: "Witches" Class Examines Folklore and Fact

Submitted on Monday, 11/19/2012, at 11:47 AM

By William Sweet

As Halloween approaches, witches fly through our imaginations, flitting through Western culture on a broomstick ride through children’s stories, TV sitcoms and movies. Witches are older than Christianity and as current as a Broadway musical hit. 

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In the Classroom

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Staller envisioned and chose the works for the Mead Art Museum's recent exhibition Goya: Prints of Darkness—including this 1803 Goya etching Buen Viage—and took her class to see the show.

“A Bouquet of Flowers of Evil”

Oct. 29, 2010

Interview by Katherine Duke ’05

Just in time for Halloween, I sat down with Natasha Staller, a professor of the history of art who is currently at work on a book called The Spanish Monster, to talk about her popular course “Witches, Vampires and Other Monsters.” Read on to find out how monsters—in different forms throughout history—have crept into disciplines ranging from art to women’s studies to medical science to political science, and why Staller finds Sharon Stone more terrifying than Nosferatu.