The Beauty and the Horror

Episode 171 · June 13th, 2024 · 1 hr 8 mins

About this Episode

This week on Weird Studies, Phil and JF explore the intersections of the beautiful and the terrible in art and literature. There is a conventional beauty that calms and placates, and there is a radical beauty which, taking horror’s pale-gloved hand, gives up all pretense to permanence and fixity and joins the danse macabre of our endless becoming. This episode is a preamble to a five-week course of lectures and discussions starting June 20th on Weirdosphere, JF and Phil’s new online learning platform. For more information and to enroll in The Beauty and the Horror, visit


JF Martel, Reclaiming Art in the Age of Artifice, the audiobook, with a new introduction written and read by Donna Tartt.
Denis Villeneuve, Dune: Part Two
William Blake, “The Tyger”
Junichiro Tanizaki, In Praise of Shadows
Steven Spielberg, Raiders of the Lost Ark
Walter Pater, The Renaissance
David Lynch, Twin Peaks: The Return
Anna Aikin, “On the Pleasure Derived from Objects of Terror
Donna Tartt, The Secret History
Keiji Nishitani, Religion and Nothingness
Charles Baudelaire, “Le Voyage”
Franz Schubert, “Death and the Maiden” Quartet
Franz Schubert, Piano Sonata in C major, D. 840
J.R.R. Tolkein, The Hobbit