Slayers and Their Vampires

By Bruce McClelland,

Book cover of Slayers and Their Vampires: A Cultural History of Killing the Dead

Book description

In contemporary Western popular culture, the vampire has evolved into one of the most recognizable symbols of evil. Yet, less has been said - and even less has been understood - about its nemesis, the vampire slayer. ""Slayers and Their Vampires"" is the first work to explore how the vampire…

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2 authors picked Slayers and Their Vampires as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Whereas Barber expounds upon the anthropological origins of the vampire myth, McClelland focuses on the practices, principles, and logistics of killing the dead. The most familiar form comes in the unearthing and mutilation of bodies. McClelland explains the whys and wherefores of that practice, but he also gives their killers more than their due, explaining the role of vampire slayers as shamans, village elders, and quasi-religious figures during Europe’s transition from its pagan roots to modern Christianity. He demonstrates that vampires fell into an uneasy space between a fading system of peasant folklore and the organized religious rituals and beliefs…

From Kurt's list on making you a true vampire scholar.

No one knows exactly where the idea of vampires comes from and there is a lot of bad information out there. To get accurate information about the origins of vampire folklore, you ideally need to know Slavic languages. McClelland has a PhD in Slavic studies and his observations are incredibly illuminating for understanding how the idea of vampires (and vampire-like creatures) makes sense within a larger cultural context of Slavic folklore. In particular, McClelland describes traditional vampire slayers—the folklore around them, the techniques they would use, and the circumstances in which a community might decide to exhume a corpse,…

From Joseph's list on vampire lore.

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