Can’t get enough books and movies about the undead? Click on the links below to explore why you might be fascinated by vampires and zombies. Leave a comment to let me know if and why you agree or disagree with any of these arguments.
In “Bitten By a Vampire,” the editors of The Week magazine speculate about why vampires might be so popular in contemporary media. This article is a great starting point, as it introduces the history of vampires in novels and films.
In “Vampires Suck,” Grady Hendrix argues that the male sexual restraint valorized in novels like Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight series conflicts with the hypersexuality websites present to curious young men. Hendrix calls both of these views of male sexuality “misrepresentations” and argues that they could cause serious problems in relationships between inexperienced adolescents.
At Slate.com, Christopher Bean and Chris Wilson dismiss any idea of a “vampire craze.” Instead of examining our fascination with vampires, the authors ask, “When have we not been in the midst of a vampire craze?” They study a few dry periods in the production of vampire stories and speculate about what it might mean for a culture not to be interested in the undead.
Anne Rice, the author of the Vampire Chronicles, discusses the “outsider” status of vampires and why teens love books about blood suckers. She admits that she didn’t do much research for her Chronicles, and that instead she relied on a modern vampire mythology she’d seen in films. This modern vampire allows for sexual overtones that just aren’t possible in stories featuring more traditional undead characters, such as the “hostages” Marcus Sedgwick writes about in My Swordhand Is Singing. Click here to read the full interview.
In “First, Eat All the Lawyers,” Torie Bosch hits a little too close to home for this professor. Bosch argues that the “zombie boom is really about the economic fears of white-collar workers,” who would have few survival skills in a post-apocalyptic world.
Which of these arguments do you find convincing, and why? Do you disagree with any of them? If so, why?