In this class we will examine the figure of the vampire, as well as the use of vampirism as a metaphor in folklore, literature, journalistic texts, theater and film. Some vampires, as we will come to learn, do not even drink blood. Many don't fear the sun. So what do these varied monsters have in common? Their "otherness" and their focalization of cultural desires and anxieties. By studying vampirism through a historical perspective, we will learn that vampires - although they may not have reflections - reflect our anxieties about alterity, particularly in regard to such charged subjects as gender, sexuality, race, religion and nationality.
Satisfies Historical Thought distribution requirement.
(Not offered 2015-2016.)