I’m trying to figure out the best way to post this bad-boy.  It is an eighty-something page senior thesis paper that won the Dorothy Lynn Prize in English at Hanover College, so I promise it’s worth reading, even it it’s long.

The title?

“Moral Vampires and Monstrous Maidens: The New Face of Gothic Literature in the Postmodern Era”

Unexpected topic? Yes. Why on earth would Ruth tackle something so ghoulish?  Here’s the quote from Thomas Harris’ novel Hannibal that got me inspired to write the entire paper:

“Now that ceaseless exposure has calloused us to the lewd and vulgar, it is instructive to see what still seems wicked to us (144).”

From that quote, I went back in time to read the earliest gothic works containing vampires (going back to Jane Austen’s era and beyond), and went forward into the age of Anne Rice, Thomas Harris (who wrote the Hannibal Lecter novels), and yes, even Stephenie Meyer’s turn-of-the-twenty-first-century Twilight Saga, in order to trace the changes in the vampire’s character, and the character of his lady-prey, over timeSomehow, I managed to sell the idea to my profs at Hanover, and in an academic setting at the Butler Universtiy  Undergraduate Research Conference.  Mostly I threw out a lot of pretty-sounding words like theological shifts, feminism, anti-feminism, Faustian paradigms, Freudian symbols, Jungian theory, and multicultural (popculture) studies.  Then I wrote. A lot. To tell all of the stories in brief, and to show how the vampire has slowly turned into the hero and the humans have turned into the villains over time. Then I tried to figure out why.  And I had a blast.  Apparently, it’s an “exhilirating read”–Dr. T’s words, not mine.

It’s coming soon.  [/UPDATE:  It’s HERE! Click blue link:] Draft of IS  *(in Word 2007 format)*

A teaser for you:  Here’s the slideshow. It won’t make a ton of sense unless you play it in slideshow mode using Powerpoint.  It might also help if you read the I.S.. But it will, hopefully, whet your appetite.

IS Moral Vamps Monstrous Maidens Powerpoint

3 Responses to “By Popular Request: Independent Study 2008-09”

  1. Elizabeth Says:

    This sounds amazing!!! I am most definately intrested in reading this. Can you email it to me ebroady@mail.utexas.edu….or i guess i can wait for you to post it…congrats on the award 🙂

  2. kilolson Says:

    I just finished it. Read it all in one go and thereby stayed up 2 hours later than I intended.


    1. You win the award, Kirsten. That’s impressive!!!! I don’t think I can stomach my own writing that long, honestly. But I’m glad you liked it.

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