American Horror Story's brutality is at the forefront of its popularity, as the show constantly brings levels of gore and violence extreme enough to make it a miracle that the episodes get aired at all. However, its treatment of gender and sexual violence have been under scrutiny from viewers due to ample violent rape scenes. Despite the outcry and increasing public awareness of non-consent, there were no existing data-based studies of the frequency and impact of the sexual violence and non consent in the show.
This lecture explores research as an effort to identify and analyze incidents of sexual violence in the show across all seasons, selecting for gender, personhood, frequency, fatality rates, and character vs plot impact in an effort to understand how the show uses intersections of sexuality and violence. It also covers the process of designing a data collection project for horror theory, and the stories in horror that deserve to be told with quantitative analysis.
Presented by Cecilia Abate