VAMPIRES: LOVESICK & BLOODTHIRSTY
JUSTIN E.H. SMITH
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Vampires have our sympathy because we know that they are living out the consequences of wanton desire, and so they symbolise the fragility of our desire-charged lives, and serve as a caution against allowing desire to overtake us. They are an expression of human wonderment at the death of the body and, with it, the individual. They are also an allegory about who others are: often dark, charged with bias and ignorance.
Vampires have existed under various names and guises in earliest recorded history, but came to occupy a particular cultural role in Europe around the end of the seventeenth century. In this book, Justin E. H. Smith shows why vampires rose to such prominence, what this says about modern European history, and indeed what it says about us.