Arachnophobia and the Use of Spiders in Popular Culture

 In Blog

Spider Sitting in middle of web

Halloween is certainly a spooky time of year. You can expect to see plenty of bats, skeletons, witches and ghosts. Much to the dismay of arachnophobia sufferers, you’ll also see plenty of big, scary spiders. Both real and fictional spiders have been an integral part of our lives throughout history. Philosophers use them in metaphors, and comic book writers turn them into superheroes. Their web-spinning talents are even referenced in our technology; the World Wide Web is a perfect example. In the spirit of the season, Anderson Pest Solutions would like to share a few unforgettable spiders that have become part of our popular culture.

Legend and Reality: Famous Spiders in Our Culture


  • For many, our exposure to spiders starts in childhood. Little Miss Muffet is a familiar character who is frightened away from her delicious snack of curds and whey by a spider.
  • Young children learn about movement and music with the “Itsy Bitsy Spider” that climbed the water spout.
  • Once they’re old enough for more advanced themes, “Charlotte’s Web” teaches kids about friendship, life, and death.
  • The 1990 film “Arachnophobia” is both fun and scary. It tells the tale of a rare imported spider causing chaos and death in a small town.
  • The term “black widow” refers to a woman with a history of dead husbands or romantic partners. It references the female black widow spider, which is known to kill and eat her mate.
  • The comic book hero Spiderman shoots webs from his arms and saves the world from villains and monsters.
  • In Asian culture, the Tsuchigumo is a mythical creature to be conquered by a variety of legendary heroes.

Arachnophobia: Why Are We So Afraid of Spiders?

In a world where we’re familiar with many different types of creepy, crawly things, the specific fear of spiders is surprisingly common. If they are so revered and honored throughout world culture, why are so many of us terrified of them? Perhaps their ability to inflict pain and illness plays a part, or it could be the idea of so many tickly little legs crawling across our skin. Some experts believe that arachnophobia is a cultural phenomenon while others think it is a protective evolutionary trait. One thing is certain; whether you love spiders or hate them, they’re a virtually inescapable part of our lives.

To Quell Arachnophobia and Keep Spiders Under Control, Call Anderson

At Anderson Pest Solutions, we understand how you feel about spiders. Whether you find potentially dangerous spiders in your home or you just want to keep the harmless ones out of your living space, we can help. Contact us today so that we can put an end to your fears through effective, environmentally responsible pest control.