14 Beetlejuice from When Women Write Horror with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (1 minute 16 seconds)

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14 Beetlejuice from When Women Write Horror with Dr. Rosanne Welch

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In honor of Halloween – and in service to my teaching philosophy —

“Words Matter. Writers Matter. Women Writers Matter.”

I presented this holiday lecture “When Women Write Horror” on Tuesday, October 29th, 2019. Researching the many, many women who have written horror stories – in novels, films and television – brought new names to my attention who I am excited to start reading. I hope you will be, too!


For me what’s interesting is other haunted house books and films — Beetlejuice being one of the more famous ones and now we’re looking at the influence here of a female actress coming into a piece because this film was written by Michael McDowell and Warren Skerin but because we have Geena Davis, who today is in charge of the Geena Davis Women in Hollywood faction — she made sure that her character had power. She had some agency inside the film. It’s about a couple that gets killed on their honeymoon and they go into hell and they meet Beetlejuice and what’s interesting is that the end they have to get rid of him. She’s the one who kills him. Not the husband. Not the male character. It’s the female character who does the thing that gets rid of the bad guy. So she saves the day and I think it’s adorable at the end of the film there’s a little human girl who can see the ghosts and they have a party not because she met a boy because she got an A in her math test. That’s a girl idea. This is what we celebrate. We don’t sully the boys come and go like buses right but the a in the math test that’s a hot thing. We’re happy about that. So you can see the influence of the female voice in this story — in this haunted house story. So I think that’s rather cool.

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