My new article for The Pandora Society: Geared Towards Speculative Fiction
Masks were originally part of the regalia for religious rituals and early theater in Europe. The fashion of wearing masks as an accessory did not make its way to the Continent until the early 1570’s when Italian courtesans began wearing stylish face coverings in order to hide their identity while in public. Although masks are worn for many purposes in the modern era, the celebration of Halloween is currently the main reason for choosing to cover one’s face. The purpose of “masking” ones identity remains the same as in the Sixteenth Century: The scope, however, has grown through the years until it is now an industry that draws in over 5 billion dollars annually for a single day of celebration . . .