February 1st, 2006

marvel - purple barton

A point to ponder.

So, I'm reading this article for mortuary practices about how belief in vampires changed the way corpses were treated in early New England (the usual dig em up and stake em, put the bones in a cross sort of paradigm). I came across this sentence:

"The vampire image found in contemporary Euroamerican cultures is based solely on Bram Stoker's Dracula (1983), an image that varies significantly from historic European and American vampire folk beliefs."

Sledzik, P.S. and N. Bellantoni. Brief Communication: Bioarchaeological and Biocultural Evidence for the New England Vampire Folk Belief. In American Journal of Physical Anthropology (1994:269-274).

So, flist, especially you Dracula fen, what do you think about this? Do you think this is necessarily true?

Keep in mind that this was written in 1993, which places it after the initial publication/acclaim for Vampire: the Masquerade and well after the beginning of Rice's Vampire Chronicles. Given that V:tM and the Vampire Chronicles represent a non-mainstream, yet not strictly historical view, do you feel that they occasioned a change in mainstream views, or reflect one? Or has there been no change in the mainstream perception of vampires?

I'm very interested to hear your thoughts. Now I must read the boring part of this article. Alas.