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Volume 6, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 2040-3275
  • E-ISSN: 2040-3283



Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard’s film The Cabin in the Woods (2012) conflates the two genres of slasher horror and conspiracy theory in such a way that articulates a trenchant critique of two totalizing grad narratives: religion and instrumental reason. Indeed, in the suturing of the story of a vast, technocratic conspiracy onto a Lovecraftian mythos about ancient gods demanding blood sacrifice, Cabin effectively dramatizes the central thesis of Dialectic of Enlightenment, by Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer (2002), insofar as blind adherence to rationality (manifested in the hyperadvanced technology of the conspiracy) is transformed into the madness of unreason. In marrying the supernatural and the technological, however, the film opens a space in which to articulate a humanist ethos, one best described as ‘magical humanism’.


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