49 episodes

American Hysteria is a podcast exploring the fantastical thinking and irrational fears of Americans through explorations of moral panics, urban legends, and conspiracy theories, how they shape our psychology and culture, and why we end up believing them. Poet turned podcaster Chelsey Weber-Smith explores the sometimes hilarious, sometimes horrifying stories of historical and modern American freak-outs, why we fear the wrong things, and the real social issues these bizarre panics act to covering up. An in-depth alternative history, the show also analyzes how issues of race, gender, sexuality, and class have informed our beliefs from the Puritans to the present.
Subscribe now on Apple, Google, Spotify, or where ever you get your podcasts.

American Hysteria Skylark Media

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.3, 1.1K Ratings

American Hysteria is a podcast exploring the fantastical thinking and irrational fears of Americans through explorations of moral panics, urban legends, and conspiracy theories, how they shape our psychology and culture, and why we end up believing them. Poet turned podcaster Chelsey Weber-Smith explores the sometimes hilarious, sometimes horrifying stories of historical and modern American freak-outs, why we fear the wrong things, and the real social issues these bizarre panics act to covering up. An in-depth alternative history, the show also analyzes how issues of race, gender, sexuality, and class have informed our beliefs from the Puritans to the present.
Subscribe now on Apple, Google, Spotify, or where ever you get your podcasts.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5
1.1K Ratings

1.1K Ratings

Cmrnrains ,

Five Stars

Not a writer so I’ll try my best to do this amazing podcast justice!
It uses pop culture references to explain how and why we’ve historically reacted to any number of things (see episode titles.)
It doesn’t avoid “controversy” (aka talking about real shi*) by presenting well researched topics in a matter-of-fact way, by unapologetic addressing racism, gender, the prison industrial complex, and etc, and having an openly queer host.
This podcast always gets me thinking of the saying that goes something like, “Know history or be doomed to repeat it.”
It’s informative, fun, and as a trans person, I feel involved in the conversation which is still a major rarity outside of exclusively queer podcasts.
Thank you for this and all of your hard work- it shows.

The Big Dude ,

V

I think the pod is well-done. However, I kind of feel like I was baited in by interesting stories just to get me to the most current offering — where you shame us into hating America because we’ve been nothing but bad...as if we’ve made no strides in becoming better citizens. Just because there’s parts of our collective pasts that we shouldn’t be proud of, doesn’t mean we don’t have a lot of
Good things that we should be proud of.

EMcNeff ,

Great Podcast

Such a great podcast. I don't agree with the hosts views, but the research is thoughtful and she encourages all of us to really process why we think what we do about the world around us. Love it!

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