The Feminisation of the Vampire

Note: At 700 pages, my latest saga must soon be finished. I do plan eventually to write a novel with a right wing vampire as the hero. Suave, dashing, utterly ruthless, etc, he will declare war on the British State. The climax will be an attack on a late sitting of the Commons. It will make The Turner Diaries Mills & Boone by comparison. SIG

by R.J. Jacob

Vampirism in 19th century English literature has always been a woman’s worst nightmare, beginning with Dr. Polidori’s 1819 The Vampyre, followed by Bram Stoker’s 1897 Dracula. Women were typically assigned the role of victim, suffering tremendously to the intense masculine horror of the classical Vampire. Joan Gordon and Veronica Hollinger argued that Stoker’s vampire was intended to represent the anti-Christ, while Milly Williamson insisted the western vampire was created to assert racial supremacy and to “frighten women into acquiescence.” Indeed, the early days of vampirism were patriarchal, terrifying and sadistic—using Stoker’s female neck ripper and Victorian Gothic aesthetic to produce an excellent collection of popular graphic horror films.

Over the last forty years, the vampire has undergone a ridiculous transformation, including an inversion in vampire morality and a change in gender dominance associated with classical vampirism. Modern secular-liberal humanism combined with the emasculation of male characters has eradicated the folkloric expression of dealing with the horrors of human nature, turning over the traditional vampire to pop-movie making and goofy romance. Vampirism today is depicted as humanistic and fashionably fabulous, having come with a never-ending list of rules and regulations for vampires, and a moralizing curse of denial. The vampire is no longer strong, proud, and supreme. He is found to be soft and emotional, unable to resist the secular form of humanism which arose during the mid-19th century, and thus develops an irrepressible longing to become “good” in the eyes of humanity.

The earliest trace of this tendency can be found in Anne Rice’s novels, The Vampire Chronicles. Lestat, who once killed several women a night, argues in Interview With A Vampire that earlier authors have inaccurately depicted him as a horrific monster—a depiction that seemingly offends Lestat. Although for centuries Lestat drinks and kills, he claims to be afraid of women and limits his nature to killing only “bad people.” By the end of the novel we find Lestat in present-day New Orleans fallen into disrepair, having developed an eating disorder—feeding on animals instead of humans. In the follow-up novels, The Vampire Lestat and Queen of the Damned, Lestat is feminized beyond belief. He becomes infatuated with notions of “humanity” and, at one point, interrupts his own narrative to describe what he is wearing. Anne Rice, who now writes only for the Lord, marked the beginning of the male vampire’s glorification of weakness, and the rise of popular vampirism among young women in the United States.

Following The Vampire Chronicles comes Buffy The Vampire Slayer, a popular franchise that aired for five years on The WB and UPN networks. Buffy is centered on vengeance and female victimhood, replacing the classical vampire hunter Van Helsing with a warrior feminist who spends a half decade trying to kill the male vampires that have terrorized women for centuries. Enter Angel (David Boreanaz) Buffy’s love interest—a once-strong, now-weakened male vampire who has a “soul” and falls in love with Buffy. A devout “vegan,” Angel eats rats. When he did actually feed on humans he cautiously took small amounts of blood from certain women with prior consent. Angel was a success and went on to get his own spin-off series on The WB Network. Ultimately, Buffy The Vampire Slayer played a major role in developing the male “vegan vampire” and shifting the vampire audience away from the male sphere and into the female sphere.

With all the bad guys gone, Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight Saga caused an explosion of vampirism into the mainstream. Twilight brings the vampire genre to a level of popularity never seen before in the United States. Of course, this obsession of “vampirism” in Uhmerikin pop culture bears no resemblance to the haunting lore of Eastern Europe. Twilight‘s vampires abstain from human blood and have no fangs. Edward is Lestat brought to his logical conclusion; the inferior archetype vampire who drinks Bambi juice and sparkles in sunshine. Although Edward claims to be “old school” and romanticizes abstinence, Edward is in fact new school, normalizing the weak morality of Lestat whereby suffering, not strength, makes the vampire superior. For Meyers, the suffering of the vampire becomes a Great Suffering which in turn makes the vampire more humanistic and more capable of co-existing with humans, or, in his case, more capable of romancing a seventeen year old girl. Although feminists are still recovering from the anti-feminist protagonist Bella, Twilight succeeds in establishing the weak vegetarian male vampire as the new norm.

HBO’s True Blood is the latest contribution to the vampire reconstruction set. Created by yet another female vampire author, Charlaine Harris, True Blood‘s vampires possess all the abilities of Bram Stoker’s original Dracula (hypnosis, super strength, enhanced speed, immortality, some vampires can even fly) but amusingly, they want “equality” or “equal rights” to those of humans.

Like all statists, True Blood‘s vampires have their organization, the American Vampire League dedicated to protecting vampires from hate crimes, discrimination, and oppression via the State. The AVL adopts the language of the GLBT and Civil Rights movements to spread an ideology of social control under the guise of co-existence and commitment to tolerance. Behind the AVL is the so called “Vampire Authority,” a secret police-state run by a small group of anti-biological vampire elites working to achieve “fearless, hate-free coexistence.” The formulation of the AVL and the ideology of “mainstreaming” is the vampire elites’ response to the human discovery of the existence of vampires and the rise of Christian paramilitary forces. The AVL introduces vampires to the public via political ads using model vampires whose physical appearance is identical to that of ordinary humans. The ads claim vampires are not monsters who crave human blood, but workers, small business owners, tax payers, and most importantly, an oppressed minority.

The Vampire Rights Amendment, if passed, would enable the public-coming-out of vampires which denies the very nature of the vampire species. Such an arrangement would force all vampires to operate within the human social contract, living openly and behaving human in the liberal human setting. Vampires are forced to drink synthetic blood—called Tru Blood—a warmed, gassy little clone created by Japanese scientists to remove the vampire’s desire to feed on humans. Naturally, a bottle of fake blood only makes most vampires long for the real thing.

True Blood‘s most moral vampire, Godric, a good little Tru Blood drinker, is said to be one of the oldest and smartest vampires in existence. It is believed Godric had evolved beyond the capacity to tolerate violence and inter-species conflict in existence, thus, he committed suicide. Not to worry, Hologram Godric reappears throughout the fourth and fifth seasons to deliver chief knowledge to vampire Eric. Godric’s pseudo-prophetic messages are perfect doctrines of inter-species harmony providing new wisdom which does not exist. Godric arrives at an abstract notion of “progress” which disassociates the vampire with power—creating a real problem. After nearly two thousand years, Godric became so weak, so hopeless; Godric met the sun not because he had “evolved” towards some higher state of enlightenment, but because he had regressed against the will to exist.

Our lady vampire authors seem to view vampires as exotic humans, and nothing more. Rice, Meyers, and Harris all conflate vampire desires with a pre-established human system, allowing vampires to “progress” only within the constraints of human laws, human values, and human beauty. Vampires are not “evolving” or becoming wiser or whatever the unofficial women’s vampire movement would have us believe. On the contrary, the refusal to kill and drink is a revolt against the will to exist! Vampires who do not drink blood have succumbed to a state of denial to the point of reducing their existence to the symbolic embodiment of their own destruction.

About these ads

4 responses to “The Feminisation of the Vampire

  1. Interesting article, I very much enjoyed it.

    I’m now going to watch the latest The Walking Dead, wherein zombies are still well and truly zombies. At least the feminists haven’t got to them yet!

  2. The vampire article is very well written. I liked the way the author illustrates the progression of the male dominated vampire of old to the now female driven humanistic character..

  3. A good analysis, save for the comments about the works of Anne Rice. whose latest book is about “Werewolves”, She’s also announced that she has given up on the Catholic Church and doesn’t write ‘for the Lord’ anymore, instead claiming to be more of a non-religious humanist.

  4. Thanks for the linkage, Sean.