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ISBN 978-0-8126-9717-9


288 pages

Spring 2011

Dexter and Philosophy

Mind Over Spatter

Edited by Richard Greene, George A. Reisch, and Rachel Robison-Greene
Volume 58 in the Popular Culture and Philosophy® series

Tonight’s the night. And it’s going to happen again and again. . . .

Why do we love Dexter so much? Why do we hope that he will keep getting away with his little escapades? Is Dexter a dark angel of justice, the nicest and neatest of monsters, a tortured victim of childhood trauma, an amoral psychopath, or a tragic superhero?

As Dexter says, “There are no secrets in life, just hidden truths that lie beneath the surface.” As you cut your way into Dexter and Philosophy, you might think you should be grossed out, even feel violated, but for some strange reason you don’t. In fact, you keep finding friendly messages, like “Hey, wanna play?” And yes, you want to play. You really, really do.

“For the millions of Dexter devotees for whom life seems drained of meaning during the dreary interregnums between seasons, this book is a godsend (assuming you believe in a god who demands human sacrifice). Like the show’s paradoxical hero himself—a sensitive, introspective, implacable psycho-killer—the essays in this compulsively readable collection manage to be both deeply engaging and intellectually challenging, forcing us to confront the most fundamental philosophical issues: the nature of evil, the limits of free will, the attraction of the horrible, and, most crucial of all, what it means to be human.”

—Harold Schechter, author of The Serial Killer Files

“Dexter, the bringer of death, paradoxically provides the perfect way to bring philosophical questions to life. The meaning of humanity, the definition of moral responsibility, the solutions to ethical dilemmas—all are illuminated by this entertaining and highly recommended study.”

—David Schmid, author of Natural Born Celebrities: Serial Killers in American Culture

“Any way you slice it, Dexter and Philosophy is a must read for fans and scholars alike.”

—Susan Amper, author of How to Write about Edgar Allan Poe

“Who knew that getting under Dexter’s skin could be so much bloody good fun? We absolutely need this book because new episodes of Dexter never come fast enough.”

—Bella DePaulo, PhD, editor of The Psychology of Dexter (2010)

Richard Greene is Professor of Philosophy at Weber State University. He co-edited Quentin Tarantino and Philosophy (2007) and Zombies, Vampires, and Philosophy (2010).

George A. Reisch teaches philosophy at Northwestern University. He wrote How the Cold War Transformed Philosophy of Science (2005) and edited Bullshit and Philosophy (2006).

Rachel Robison-Greene is a PhD candidate at UMass Amherst. She co-edited The Golden Compass and Philosophy (2009).

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