44 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, 959 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
959 Ratings

959 Ratings

Lulutheguru ,

Curb your enthusiasm

I really like this podcast but the presenter would benefit from some acting or public speaking instruction. The constant high pitch of enthusiasm has me expecting her next words to be “GIMME A T!” as if we were at a high-school pep rally. The writing and information are so interesting I’d listen anyway, but she could take her work to a higher level with a bit more subtlety.

ChristenNotForgotten ,

A Less Ironic Review for a Great Podcast

The host of this podcast is female. She has a pitch and tone that sounds female. Younger folks will tend not to like this. If she lowered her voice to vocal fry to be taken more seriously then she would just alienate older folks who dislike this in women. The way women talk is just one of many critiques people have about us when we talk. It just is what it is. The host sounds just fine to me and is easy to listen to.

The host is smart and well-informed. The content is well-researched. Having lived through most of these hysterias, times 10 in my fundamentalist upbringing, it’s like a therapy to my soul.

As a small child, I didn’t want to boycott literally everything, have only a few cartoons and toys to choose from that weren’t “satanic,” or to think of gay people as bad. I was taught I had to. It went against my merciful nature and my desire not to live in fear. To understand why parents and society were this way gives me an opportunity to look back at my childhood and think a host of new thoughts. Thank you.

KLaNeaD ,

Unimpressed by depiction of southerners

This podcast is honestly a fun listen. However, it’s really annoying how (in some episodes) southerners/ southern accents are depicted as invalid, intolerant, imbeciles.... just no.

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