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ABSTRACT. Creativity is value-neutral. While it can be used to bring into the world ideas and objects of beauty, or at least novelty, creativity may be – and often is – used with malevolent intent. This article is concerned with creative minds which conceive of and cause horrors to be enacted. It reappraises certain romantic notions attached to the concept of creativity. Social and cultural aspects of “dark creativity” are touched upon, and I explore political “Romances” from those of right-wing Libertarians to National Romanticists. This article also looks at certain psychic conditions in which creative processes occur, drawing a line from Victor Turner’s anthropological exploration of liminal zones accessed by tribal initiates or “liminars” through to what I call the virtual or “e-Liminal” world of online gaming and socializing where “fears and fantasies” (Kraidy, 2017, p. 4) are sown. Creativity is the most powerful of forces, and it is a misnomer to see it as necessarily associated with ethical responsibility or goodness or beauty, for it is utterly amoral and unbound by any aesthetic order. The spatial and temporal ambiguity of liminal space, as explored in this article, can be applied to the tribal liminar, the free-market fundamentalist, or the jihadi. Creative spaces are incubators for both angels and monsters, and a great deal more in between. pp. 64–75

Keywords: malcreativity; creativity; horror; terror; political imagination; dreams

doi:10.22381/KC6220185

LOUISE KATZ
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University of Sydney

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