A Genealogy of Modern Fear

The Cracked Podcast #81 July 27, 2015

If you turn on the TV or scroll through Facebook for any short period of time, it seems like we’re consumed with fear. There’s always a new airborne virus or a new piece of legislature destined to sink the country into Purge-like anarchy, not to mention the sharks, snakes and spiders that have been trying to kill us for millennia.

It’s easy to place the blame on media in the 21st century, but fear mongering is no recent addition to the human experience. You can go back through history and trace all sorts of fears through the written word. Where now our movies depict zombies, alien invasions and nuclear wars, medieval literature spoke of demons, hellfire and apocalypse scenarios more fitting to the times.

This week Jack O’Brien is joined by Kristi Harrison and Michael Swaim to tackle everything related to how we experience fear in the 21st century: what fears we can blame on evolution and what fears we can blame on society, whether it’s true to say we’re more afraid now than ever before and what our most common fears say about us as a species.

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