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Open Graves, Open Minds: Representations of vampires and the Undead from the Enlightenment to the present day by Sam George (Editor); Bill Hughes (Editor)Open graves, open minds relates the Undead in literature and other media to questions concerning genre, technology, consumption and social change. It features original research by leading scholars (Dr Sam George is a frequent commentator on the contemporary vampire; Dr Catherine Spooner, a pioneer of the study of Contemporary Gothic; and Dr Stacey Abbott is the author of the seminal work on the vampire in film and TV). The essays cover texts both familiar and unexpected, bringing debates around fictional vampires into the twenty-first century where they are currently enjoying a vogue.This wide-ranging collection forms a coherent narrative which follows Enlightenment studies of the vampire's origins in folklore and folk panics, tracing sources of vampire fiction, through Romantic incarnations in Byron and Polidori to Le Fanu's Carmilla. Further essays discuss the undead in the context of Dracula, fin-de-siècle decadence and Nazi Germany together with early cinematic treatments. The rise of the sympathetic vampire is charted from Coppola's Dracula, to Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Twilight. More recent manifestations in novels, TV, Goth subculture, young adult fiction and cinema are dealt with in discussions of True Blood, The Vampire Diaries and much more.The book is essential reading for those who wish to explore open graves with an open mind: scholars of literature and film, enthusiasts of all things vampiric and writers of Undead fiction. The Transylvanian notebooks of the award-winning novelist Marcus Sedgwick conclude the study, shedding light on recent trends in young adult fiction. Sedgwick lays bare the writing process for budding novelists and creative writers in the genre.
Publication Date: 2015
The Vampire: A New History by Nick GroomAn authoritative new history of the vampire, two hundred years after it first appeared on the literary scene Published to mark the bicentenary of John Polidori's publication of The Vampyre, Nick Groom's detailed new account illuminates the complex history of the iconic creature. The vampire first came to public prominence in the early eighteenth century, when Enlightenment science collided with Eastern European folklore and apparently verified outbreaks of vampirism, capturing the attention of medical researchers, political commentators, social theorists, theologians, and philosophers. Groom accordingly traces the vampire from its role as a monster embodying humankind's fears, to that of an unlikely hero for the marginalized and excluded in the twenty-first century. Drawing on literary and artistic representations, as well as medical, forensic, empirical, and sociopolitical perspectives, this rich and eerie history presents the vampire as a strikingly complex being that has been used to express the traumas and contradictions of the human condition.
Publication Date: 2018
In Frankenstein's Shadow: Myth, Monstrosity, and Nineteenth-Century Writing by Chris BaldickThe story of Frankenstein and the monster he created is one of our most important modern myths. This study surveys the history of the myth in literature before the advent of film. First examining the range of meanings generated by Mary Shelley's Frankenstein in light of images of political "monstrosity" produced by the French Revolution, Baldick goes on to trace the protean transformations of the myth in the fiction of Hoffmann, Hawthorne, Dickens, Melville, Conrad, and Lawrence, as well as in the historical and political writings of Carlyle and Marx and the science fiction of Stevenson and Wells. In conclusion, he shows that the myth's most powerful associations have centered on human relationships, the family, work, and politics.
Publication Date: 1990
New Romantic Cyborgs: Romanticism, Information Technology, and the End of the Machine by Mark CoeckelberghAn account of the complex relationship between technology and romanticism that links nineteenth-century monsters, automata, and mesmerism with twenty-first-century technology's magic devices and romantic cyborgs. Romanticism and technology are widely assumed to be opposed to each other. Romanticism--understood as a reaction against rationalism and objectivity--is perhaps the last thing users and developers of information and communication technology (ICT) think about when they engage with computer programs and electronic devices. And yet, as Mark Coeckelbergh argues in this book, this way of thinking about technology is itself shaped by romanticism and obscures a better and deeper understanding of our relationship to technology. Coeckelbergh describes the complex relationship between technology and romanticism that links nineteenth-century monsters, automata, and mesmerism with twenty-first-century technology's magic devices and romantic cyborgs. Coeckelbergh argues that current uses of ICT can be interpreted as attempting a marriage of Enlightenment rationalism and romanticism. He describes the "romantic dialectic," when this new kind of material romanticism, particularly in the form of the cyborg as romantic figure, seems to turn into its opposite. He shows that both material romanticism and the objections to it are still part of modern thinking, and part of the romantic dialectic. Reflecting on what he calls "the end of the machine," Coeckelbergh argues that to achieve a more profound critique of contemporary technologies and culture, we need to explore not only different ways of thinking but also different technologies--and that to accomplish the former we require the latter.