Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Vampire Defanged:

The Vampire Defanged: The: How the Embodiment of Evil Became a Romantic Hero By: Susannah Clements
Non-fiction: Literature, History, Paranormal, Religion 208 pages
Book Count: 30

This book deals with the changing religious and cultural themes found in vampire stories.  It starts out with Dracula pointing out the way the story was about evil and sin as seen from a Christian world view.  It then talks about the works of Anne Rice and how they also deal with religious ideas but not in a way that has clear cut answers.  Next it moves on to Buffy the Vampire Slayer (TV only) and the spin-off Angel, where many different religions as well as secular ideas formed there universe.  Then  the Sookie Stackhouse mysteries and True Blood removed most religious themes from their vampire stories, and replaced them with purely cultural themes of discrimination, what makes one a human, and how laws/rules change in different cultures.  The last major series discussed is Twilight, which basically removed all religious issues with vampires and changed them into "vegetarian" super heroes.  It also talks some of a few other books and movies is slight details. 
The book is a limited, but interesting look into the way that changing culture changes our stories to match it.  It would be best if the reader had at least a basic knowledge of all the stories before reading this book.  You should also know that it is clearly written from a Protestant Christian Worldview; however, they are not writing in a way that condemns vampire stories and they try to understand the Orthodox/Catholic beliefs that combined with earlier folk beliefs to make up traditional European vampire stories. 

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