Thursday, 27 October 2011

Dracula, vampires, World War 1

Encompass Editions
The Borgo Post's latest issue arrived in the mail, today. I was having a read through it and came across Elizabeth Miller's review of Robert A. Douglas' That line of darkness

Miller says the author 'takes as his starting cue Gothic novels, most notably Bram Stoker's Dracula, Robert Louis Stevenson's The Strange Case of Dr. Jeykll and Mr Hyde, and Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Grey peering through the lens of these extraordinary works to explore the class, race and gender tensions in late nineteenth-century Britain.'1 According to Amazon, the paperback edition was published 10 May 2011; the hardback a month later. News to me.

Admittedly, it doesn't cater to my preferred area of vampire interest (folklore), but I've added it to my Amazon Wishlist, anyway. The publisher's website contains more info on the book, even reprinting its bibliography. Interestingly, it seems this work is only the first volume of Douglas' exploration. I couldn't find any info on the next one. I'll look into that.

Funnily enough, it's not even the first scholarly book to put heavy emphasis on the connection between vampires and societal tensions leading to the First World War. That honour probably goes to Sara Libby Robinson's Blood will tell: vampires as political metaphors before World War 1 (2011).

Before that, Terry Phillips related 'The discourse of the vampire in First World War writing', published in 2006.2 Meanwhile, Kim Newman's 1995 novel, The bloody Red Baron—the second book in his 'Anno Dracula' series—is set during the War.

1. E Miller, review of That line of darkness: the spirit of Dracula and the Great War by Robert A. Douglas, The Borgo Post, Fall 2011, p. 3. The book's actual subtitle is The shadow of Dracula and the Great War. Perhaps a misprint on Miller's behalf.

2. T Phillips, 'The discourse of the vampire in First World War writing', in P Day (ed.), Vampires: myths and metaphors of enduring evil, At the interface/probing the boundaries 28, Rodopi, Amsterdam, pp. 65–80.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...