The desires of the audience’s heart are as crooked as corkscrews. We continue to love what we ought to hate.

This is the human condition, this sneaking suspicion of our own badness. It lies at the heart of our fascination with people who do awful things. Something in us—in me—chimes to that awfulness, recognizes it in myself, is horrified by that recognition, and then thrills to the drama of loudly denouncing the monster.

What do we do with the art of monsters from the past? Look for ourselves there—in the monstrousness.