Our deep need for monsters that lurk in the dark
Sea monsters are the stuff of legend - lurking not just in the depths of the oceans, but also the darker corners of our minds. What is it that draws us to these creatures, asks Mary Colwell. "Sometimes human places create inhuman monsters," wrote Stephen King in his novel The Shining. Many academics agree. "They don't really exist, but they play a huge role in our mindscapes, in our dreams, stories, nightmares, myths and so on," says Matthias Classen, assistant professor of literature and media at Aarhus University in Denmark, who studies monsters in literature. "Monsters say something about human psychology, not the world." They lurk in the deepest recesses, they prowl through our ancestral minds appearing in the half-light, under the bed - or at the bottom of the sea. One Norse legend talks of the Kraken, a deep sea creature that was the curse of fishermen. If sailors found a place with many fish, most likely it was the monster that was driving them to the surface. If it saw the ship it would pluck the hapless sailors from the boat and drag them to a watery grave
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Do we have a need for monsters? I think we all like to be scared and are intrigued and excited by the thought of them.Certainly makes life more interesting .