Curated byDeenah Vollmer, Hark Editor
8 CLIPS24 MINS
Clip 1 of 8

The Clown in Ancient Times

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Jesters have been around since ancient Egypt and China. The trickster archetype is as old as human history itself. American Hysteria host Chelsey Weber-Smith discusses the history and societal roles of the fool on You're Wrong About.
The Clown in Ancient Times

You're Wrong About

3 MINS
Clip 2 of 8

Joseph Grimaldi, the First Whiteface Clown

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Joseph Grimaldi pioneered the white makeup and red makeup style we associate with clown today. We’ll hear that history on The Strange and Unusual Podcast with host Alyson Horrocks.
Joseph Grimaldi, the First Whiteface Clown

The Strange and Unusual Podcast

6 MINS
Clip 3 of 8

Bozo the Clown & Ronald McDonald

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Only in the 20th century did clowns become entertainers for children. Hosts Josh Clark and Chuck Bryant discuss Bozo the Clown and Ronald McDonald On Stuff You Should Know.
Bozo the Clown & Ronald McDonald

Stuff You Should Know

1 MIN
Clip 4 of 8

John Wayne Gacy, the Killer Clown

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In the 1960s, we had the world’s most famous killer clown. John Wayne Gacy was a serial killer, a sex offender, and, you guessed it, a clown! On American Hysteria, Chelsey Weber-Smith explains how this murderous clown contributed to clown panic.
John Wayne Gacy, the Killer Clown

American Hysteria

2 MINS
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The Clowns We See But Cannot Find

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In the early 1980s, children reported seeing scary clowns that authorities could never find. This led to a term called “Phantom Clown Theory.” On Decoder Ring, Slate’s TV critic Willa Paskin reports on the hysteria around clowns.
The Clowns We See But Cannot Find

Decoder Ring

2 MINS
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The Scary Clown on Screen with 'Poltergeist,' Pennywise & The Joker

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Slate’s TV critic Willa Paskin shares the history of clowns in horror movies like 'Poltergeist' and 'The Joker.'
The Scary Clown on Screen with 'Poltergeist,' Pennywise & The Joker

Decoder Ring

2 MINS
Clip 7 of 8

Clowns & the Uncanny Valley Theory

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So what is it about clowns exactly that we find scary? Chelsey Weber-Smith explains how the “Uncanny Valley” theory might provide insight into what about the clown aesthetic might be inherently scary to humans. From the podcast You’re Wrong About.
Clowns & the Uncanny Valley Theory

American Hysteria

2 MINS
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The Scary Clown Deindividuated Theory

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On The Strange and Unusual Podcast, host Alyson Horrocks posits that the social psychology theory of “Deindividuation” might explain some of the fear around clowns.
The Scary Clown Deindividuated Theory

The Strange and Unusual Podcast

2 MINS
Curated byDeenah Vollmer
8 CLIPS24 MINS

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