|Institution:||University of Iceland|
|Full text PDF:||http://hdl.handle.net/1946/20944|
The vampire is an interesting creature. This essay explores the vampire and its evolution from the time it first appeared in literature and up to modern vampire literature. Vampire fiction has gone through many drastic changes during this long period of time as is shown in this essay. A general discussion about the vampire in history and in literature is put forth to give the reader a better understanding of the vampire’s evolution through the centuries. The focus will mostly be on the influence Bram Stoker‘s Dracula, a key work in vampire fiction, has had on the works of writers of young adult vampire fiction. In order to examine this, various elements in both Dracula and the other primary texts are looked at and similarities and differences between nineteenth-century vampire fiction and modern vampire fiction are analyzed. The vampire as it appears in Dracula is quite different from the modern vampire, which explains why vampires have in recent years been divided into two separate categories, that of the “old” and the “new” vampires. The differences between these two categories are examined along with the folkloric influences that are found in vampire fiction. Modern vampire fiction, which has less to do with folklore than the nineteenth-century fiction, does no longer necessarily belong to the horror genre but has made the move into urban fantasy. This move between genres is interesting and ideas as to the cause of this will be looked at. Aside from Dracula, three book series are analyzed. These series are The Vampire Diaries by L. J. Smith, The House of Night by P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast and The Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead. The book series that are examined here are all marketed for young adults and each of them has enjoyed commercial success.