TYPOLOGIES OF EVIL IN THE X-FILES
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When the show first appeared in the `90sI saw The X-filespurely as entertainment. Having recently reexaminedthe series with a more scholarly approach new perspectives have come to light.My research question has been this: TherearedifferentaspectsofevilinTheX-Files.WhatcharacterizesthedifferentfacesofevilinTheX-FilesanalyzedintermsofthephilosophyofevilbyHannahArendt,LarsFredrikSvendsen,JohnKekesandZygmuntBauman?By applying four different typologies of evil,multiple drives behind various evil acts stand out. By applying theory in combination with applied ethics is has been possible to raise specific philosophical question in relation the evil. Is the state evil? Is Mulder evil? Is the Cancer Man evil? And what kind of evil do they represent? Evil, is a controversial term to apply. It can be misused as in propaganda in the unethical labelling of an enemy. However, does this not supportthe claim that man has an inherent fascination with evil? It clearly does. Evilis an enduring, never-ending problem for Mankind. Arguably, John Kekes givesone of the most comprehensive definitions of evil. He observes that evil is: «Serious (motivated)harm that causes fatal or lasting physical injury, as do murder, torture and mutilation. It could also be nonphysical such as loss of love and honor. In addition,destroying happiness. But also a desire to create harm and take a delight in causing it(Kekes 2005:1-3).As mostdefinitions, it has its weaknesses. In this case, it ignores the point that evil is more than motivational acts. People also act without thinking. Still, to me, it was the best definition because it recognizes the fact that evil is not just about «stealing some pears» (Augustin). Evil is morally wrong, sinful and wicked acts. My research is a modest contributionto the ethical and philosophical debate about evil. Movies and TV-shows are more than entertainment. They provide us withcultural references. We should not underestimate the power of movies as a source of information about evil. As shown in the analysischapters 7to 9, The X-filesis a TV-show that contains a substantial amount of ethical debates in relation to evil. Themes like governmental lies and withholding of information, terrorism, cloning, unethical science, evil banality, evil enjoyment, and dangerous idealism are all vital parts of the show’s storyline.
Master's thesis religion REL500 - University of Agder 2019