Friday, October 23, 2009

Interesting Results

Lindsay's blog entry, "Friday Giveaway Take 3", asks a prurient question:

There were 18 responses to her request and this is where it gets interesting.

Even though Lindsay's blog primarily concentrates on vampire fiction, 14 of the respondents said they'd like more coverage given to vampire myth!

One of the commentators, joder, even suggested the following:
I like the inclusion of myths, maybe you could get a professor to blog about the topic on a regular basis (we can have our own Dr. Sanguinary).
With all the coverage currently given to Twilight, True Blood and, to a lesser extent, The Vampire Diaries, I was starting to think that the Vampire Fad's been driven by characterisations, not vampires themselves.

That is, it's not that we've become enamoured of bloodsuckers, but of characters (like Edward Cullen) who just happen to be vampires. Vampire Celebrities, if you will. Flavours of the Month.

Thus, the results from Lindsay's blog entry do give me some inspiration. After all, there's much more to the rich fabric of the Vampire Universe than what Stephenie Meyer, Anne Rice or even Bram Stoker have contributed to it.

Of course, I should admit to a personal bias here.

I'm much more interested in vampire folklore; the "myths" most likely referred to by Lindsay and her respondents. However, the late Alan Dundes criticised using the term "myth" in reference to vampires. Here's what he wrote in The Vampire: A Casebook (Madison, Wisconsin: The University of Wisconsin Press, 1998):
The use of the word myth to refer to stories of the vampire is anathema to the professional folklorist. For the folklorist, myth is a technical term referring to sacred narratives explaining how the world or humankind came to be in their present form. Because encounters with vampires, real or imagined, having nothing whatever to do with the creation of the world or humankind, they do not qualify as bona fide myths. Nor are such stories "folktales," which are fictional, as indicated by an opening formula (e.g., "Once upon a time"), signalling that what follows is not to be taken as literal, historical truth. Vampire accounts are what folklorists call legends, that is, stories told as true and set in the postcreation world (159).
In terms of fictional literary tastes, you'll have to scour through "Hi Angela!" to see the type that appeals to me.

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