The Devil Probably: A Century of Satanic Panic

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Inspiring a wealth of creative output, negative perceptions about Satanism and the occult have been perpetually harnessed by those in power to stoke alarmist fears about artists, feminists, people of color, rebellious youths, and other groups who have threatened the status quo, contributing to the rise of mass hysteria, conspiracy theories, and superstition. Conversely, many of these groups and their allies have aimed to challenge oppressive regimes through satirical, oppositional, or sympathetic interpretations of Satanic mythology, which have taken a variety of artistic forms. Whether presented as allegory or nonfiction, representations of Satan and Satanic worship act as barometers for socio-political trends and inspire scrutiny of historic and modern-day witch-hunts around the world. Taking this discourse as a point of departure, this series showcases the phenomenon and legacy of Satanic Panic as it’s been manifested cinematically throughout the history of the medium.