Halloween is such a fascinating holiday to consider from a cultural perspective. During Halloween season we revel in breaking taboos and dancing with danger. We celebrate life by mocking death. We look our fears in the face and find a way to laugh. While we spend the rest of the year doing our best to avoid the topic of death, on Halloween we look it in the face and say not today.
The liminality of the holiday lends itself to liberation of appearance and identity, two things Americans take very seriously the rest of the year. Halloween is a day to dress up literally anyway you want. Children dress up for candy. Adolescents dress up for a night of pranks and mayhem. But why do adults dress up?
So your friendly neighborhood anthropologist wants to know:
What are you dressing up as for Halloween? Why? (Please Post Pics in the Comments)
In hopes of digging a little bit deeper, I’m asking this question to people on through my social media accounts. Look for an update over the weekend.