Villains, Violence, and Vogue

"Glow" Title Page

Aristotle first recognized the paradox of tragic art. Why do we enjoy watching fictional characters suffer when we would be horrified by the same thing in real life? Contemporary pop-culture is full of such apparent paradoxes. Why do we enjoy seeing someone incinerated by a high-powered laser beam in a movie or comic book, but not in real life? Do pro-wrestling fans enjoy seeing a person get a chair smashed over their head more or less if they believe that it really hurts? Why do people often love the bad guys in fiction, finding malicious characters, such as the Joker or Chris Jericho, charming, even admirable? 

Why are male villains and heroes both clad in flamboyant, colorful attire, even when they are symbols of a conventional masculinity that traditionally shuns sartorial preoccupation? How might a proclivity for elaborate displays of mayhem be related to one for elaborately tailored attire? Professors Geoff Klock and Ben Abelson will discuss these and related questions, deploying their expertise in literature, film, philosophy, and pop culture in their responses to them.




Location: Strand Bookstore

828 Broadway, New York, NY 10003

The Rare Book Room at Strand Bookstore boasts an elegant venue for our Friday night residency.




Interdisciplinary Learning with the Best Professors


Think Olio is not about learning a new skill or adding credentials to your resume. It is about getting together with other people and expanding our worldview. It exists as a conduit for fruitful discussions, a dissent from the regurgitation of facts, and an embrace of new perspectives.


Learn about joining the Scenius for $10 / month



Other upcoming Olios


Sep 17

Our Pornographic Education

Taught by Kim Nguyen
7:30 p.m. at Crystal Lake

Sign Up - $15

Sep 18

Mediated Intimacy: The Dating App Landscape

Taught by Pani Farvid
7 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $15

Sep 19

* Sold Out * OlioTrip | Cienfuegos, Cuba

Taught by Teresita Levy
10 a.m. at Cienfuegos, Cuba

Sign Up - $

Sep 23

New York, The Neoliberal City

Taught by Lauren Hudson
7:30 p.m. at The Old Stone House

Sign Up - $15

Sep 26

Living Room Salon | 'Dirty Computers', Voice & Visibility

Taught by Kashema Hutchinson
8 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $15

Sep 29

Olio FieldTrip | Skateboarding and Modern Art

Taught by Ted Barrow
1 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $30

Oct 4

Modern Privacy: Reclaiming Our Self Narratives

Taught by Lawrence Cappello
7 p.m. at Strand Bookstore

Sign Up - $20

Oct 15

Olio Seminar | Kafka will Ruin Your Life and Make You Laugh About it

Taught by Geoff Klock
7:30 p.m. at Strong Rope Brewery

Sign Up - $60

Oct 22

The Fear of Leisure

Taught by Jeanne Proust
7:30 p.m. at Threes Brewing // Greenpoint

Sign Up - $15


Find out when we launch new classes!