EXPERT ON HORROR AND MORBID CURIOSITY.
Who I am
I am a researcher at the Institute for Mind and Biology at The University of Chicago and at the Recreational Fear Lab at Aarhus University in Denmark.
I'm currently writing a book on morbid curiosity that will be published by Penguin Random House in the Fall of 2023. I also have a column on Psychology Today called Morbid Minds where I write about the psychology of morbid curiosity and horror. You can find it here.
What I do
What is it about monsters, murderers, and the macabre that draws us in and inspires curiosity? More importantly, how does this morbid curiosity affect us in our daily life?
These are the core questions that motivate much of my research, whether that research involves tracking participants’ eye movements as they inspect a cabinet of morbid items or measuring their heart rate as they fight their way through a haunted house.
I’ve been conducting pioneering research on the psychology of morbid curiosity and horror fans for several years. Most of my research looks at how and why people sometimes find enjoyment — and can perhaps learn something — from fictionally dangerous scenarios. My work has been covered by dozens of international newspapers, magazine, radio shows, and podcasts. You can check out some of the media coverage of my work here.