Queendom of shadows: the female vampire on film from Theda Bara to A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night

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2022-03-31

Authors

Abbott, Stacey

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Abstract

In this lecture I will discuss how the vampire emerged from the 19th Century folklore and literature and settled into 20th century cinema to become a significant and persistent filmic presence that continues to haunt our screens well into the 21st century. By focusing on the role of the female vampire, from the 'vamp' to the skateboard riding spectre of A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, I will question why this figure continues to have cultural currency, and examine how the vampire operates as an instructive metaphor for changing discourses around sexuality, modernity, identity, gender and feminism. Through this analysis, I will consider how the female vampire continues to function as an empowering icon of strength, power, and freedom.

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