Program Details

The Supernatural in History and Culture: Witches, Ghosts, Vampire and More

Helene Herman
Video Catch-up

Course Description

Various alleged and mostly evil supernatural entities have plagued humanity from Ancient to Modern times as humans have sought to explain the inexplicable. Today, at least fifty percent of all American adults believe in at least one supernatural creature despite contradictory scientific evidence! This series will explore "Things that go BUMP in the Night!" Demons, Vampires, Ghosts, Zombies, and Witches will be examined both cross culturally and historically in Western and non-Western societies, including how religious and political bodies have sought to rid us of them through punishment, death, or exorcism. Today, stories of these "monsters" continue to terrify and thrill us. We will look at how our fear and fascination of the supernatural continues to feed and sometimes calm our terror through classic literature, books, film, and television.


  1. Witches
  2. Vampires
  3. Ghosts, Zombies and the Undead
  4. Demons

About the Instructor

  • Helene Herman retired as President of a 400-member lifelong learning club in Florida that evolved from Brandeis Women. She lectures on a variety of historical and cultural topics. Herman has more than 30 years of executive-level experience in global marketing for a variety of American manufacturers in diverse product areas. She earned a bachelor's degree in anthropology from NYU; her background in cultural anthropology was instrumental in putting her on the path to her marketing career and her career as a Lifelong Learning lecturer.