Friday, 24 July 2009

Your inner vampire

I recently saw a book from 1999 by French sociologist Sabine Jarrot, Le vampire dans la littérature du XIXe au XXe siècle, which explores the differences between the portrayal of the vampire in the 19th and 20th centuries. She concludes that the vampire has become humanizes and asks what that tells us about our modern society and ourselves. Apart from a chapter on the genesis of the vampire that contains some information on the historical vampire, this book of course mainly is about fictional vampires.

This humanization of the vampire - which is also evident for certain other 'monsters' - is apparent from so much of the vampire fiction currently available, so much so that the so-called Vampire-con has taken the identification with the vampire as its catchphrase: 'Find your inner vampire'.

This 'con' has been mentioned in several places, so I thought I should mention it as well, at least it goes to show the popularity of vampire fiction these days. Set in mid August in Hollywood it is basically a film festival with panel discussions and a party. A number of well-known authors participate: Leslie S. Klinger, J. Gordon Melton, David J. Skal, and even Don F. Glut, and the vampire movies include older 'classics' and a sneak preview of an upcoming movie.

Well, you can look for yourself at the official site where you can also find information on the sponsors like a company that sells vampire wine, vodka and fangs! Even us Europeans can easily purchase a bottle of the wine from an online shop, if anyone should wish to impress (?) their friends by serving a 2005 vintage Vampire (actually, Californian Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon).

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