Ancient Magic and the Supernatural in the Modern Visual and Performing Arts examines the impact of ancient religious, mythological and magical models on modern mentalities and ideologies as expressed in the visual and performing arts. To what extent did mythological figures such as Circe and Medea influence the representation of the powerful "oriental" enchantress in modern Western art? What role did the ancient gods and heroes play in the construction of the imaginary worlds of the modern fantasy genre? What is the role of undead creatures like zombies and vampires in mythological films? Looking across the millennia, from the distrust of ancient magic and oriental cults, seen as a menace by a new-born Christian religion, to the revival and adaptation of ancient myths and religion in the arts centuries later, this book offers an original analysis of the reception of ancient magic and the supernatural, across a wide variety of different media – from comics to film, from painting to opera. The authors of the essays come from different fields and countries, and aim to deconstruct certain scholarly traditions by proposing original interdisciplinary approaches and collaborations, showing to what extent the visual and performing arts of different periods interlink and shape cultural and social identities. The volume provides the reader with a clear insight into mechanisms of re-elaboration and reception which can be steadily seen at work in artistic and commercial productions. It also supplies new approaches to the most debated questions of the relationship between magic, religion and superstition in the ancient and in the modern worlds. It shows and discusses the shifting and biased interpretations of these concepts in modern visual culture.