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What Scares Us Makes Us Stronger?

iStock/Thinkstock(PHILADELPHIA) -- Halloween is a time of year that seems to bring out our fascination for getting the wits scared out of us.

While enjoying horror movies does seem strange, Saint Joseph's University assistant English professor Paul J. Patterson says it’s an enjoyment we share with many generations before us.

Among other things, his students study such classic works as Homer's Odyssey, Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein, director Alfred Hitchcock's films, assorted slasher movies and every horror genre that’s come after the 9/11 attacks.

The current trend in horror, according to Patterson, seems to focus on torture as well as widespread outbreaks of disease that seem to always come back to zombies.

Although what seems to terrify people most is death.  Patterson concedes it could be something other than the Grim Reaper that stirs up our deepest fears.

As for the future of horror, he suggests, “It may be technology going too far and taking us over, or the anonymity that technology affords backfiring on us.” 

Whatever lies ahead, Patterson says the bottom line continues to be “our desire to defeat what is hunting and haunting us.”

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

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