The idea of Halloween, as we know it now, stemmed from a Celtic festival which marked the turn of the season and the end of summer. This was the time of year most associated with human death. As time went on, the tradition of Halloween spread to America. The Americans started to borrow from the Irish and English traditions and began to get all dressed up in scary costumes and go from door to door asking for food or money, a practice that has now become known as “trick-or-treat”.
People often argue that trick or treating is an unhealthy practice, leading children to believe that taking is better than giving, which induces them to grow up with traits of greed and selfishness.
Psychologists have studied the difference between children wearing masks, and those who go without when trick or treating. The results show that the ‘anonymous’ children are more likely to take more candies, as their faces are unknown to their neighbour. Therefore, there is a question of whether or not there is a manifestation of greed that arises from trick or treating.
Other dangerous factors surrounding trick or treating include a higher alcohol intake within older generations such as students and adults, who celebrate Halloween in costumes and consume alcohol whilst walking around their neighbourhoods. This is because they seem to act more recklessly than those who are recognisable, possibly due to feeling safer under a mask to act in whichever way they want to.
There are also higher rates of vehicle and pedestrian accidents for people of all ages, as they tend to walk in the road without thinking of the consequences, due to their inhibitions being lowered, and their rash tendencies heightened.
Other than those taking part in the spooky tradition, Halloween also affects those at home.
Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK, said: ‘Halloween can be great fun, with trick or treating playing a big part in the evening’s entertainment. However, some older people who are at home on Halloween may feel scared or threatened.’
Even though precautions should be taken, and consideration of others is necessary on Halloween night, having an amazing time and a whole load of spooky fun is also imperative.
Reading University Student’s Unions is inviting all students to celebrate Halloween this year, by putting on events such as; “A Nightmare on Friar Street” on Monday 29th October, which includes having a wristband with entry into Matchbox, Lola Lo’s and Q Club.
Then on actual Halloween, the 31st, Union is the place to be! So get dressed up and be ready to have the fright night of your life!
Other places in town are also highlighting the night with special Halloween offers and events so don’t miss out on having a delicious yet affordable meal before your spooky night out! Alternatively, make the night yours with copious amounts of Halloween candy snack packs, and a scary film at the Vue cinema.