The Eternal Allure of Immortality From Dracula to Edward: The Evolution of the Vampire Figure and its Undying Appeal to the Modern-Day Reader
The Vampire: a dangerous predator yet so alluring and seducing. Over the last few
decades, the fascination for the ancient myth of the vampire has increased significantly.
Highly adaptable to the needs of any society, the original image of the mythological vampire
has undergone several changes to adjust to the demands of modern-day society. The
vampire’s adaptability to contemporary society also makes vampire fiction suitable for the
teaching of English as a second language, more so in relation with topics such as Aspects of
Society or the Media, which are a part of the curriculum. Moreover, in the age of multimedia,
it is essential to include a vast range of media into our teaching. As the collection of
adaptations of the vampire myth includes numerous books, book series, TV shows, films and
even musicals, it provides the perfect ground for in-class implementation as well as a new,
modern literary perspective away from the traditional Canon of literary works.
As the list of book series and films featuring vampires has become seemingly endless
and, still, their success does not seem to see the slightest decrease, the question remains why
the vampire represents such an ample inspiration for the modern-day writer and exerts such
an indescribable attraction on the modern reader and what might be the cause of its undying
In the first chapter of this thesis, I will analyse the development of the Vampire from
Bram Stoker’s Dracula, which can be seen as a milestone in the evolution of the vampire
figure as we know it today, to its more recent adaptations, such as Anne Rice’s Vampire
Chronicles or Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight Saga.
The second chapter of this thesis will investigate the various reasons for the
incredible fascination the vampire figure inspires in the reader, especially in the modern-day
reader. The question that I seek to answer is why the vampire has seen its revival at the turn
of the century and remains immortal through the ever growing demands of the modern-day
reader. Different explanations for this allure, such as the vampire’s high adaptability, the
fascination for and the power of blood, escapism as well as the everlasting human struggle
for immortality and eternal youth and beauty, will be taken into account.
All in all, I will establish that these various factors have contributed to the vampire’s
survival into the twenty-first century as well as succeeded in making the vampire immortal
through his success with the modern-day reader and audience.