vampire class

The Literary Perspective: Vampire Literature and Film class meets to discuss one of the vampire books they are reading on Jan. 21 in Plumb Hall. “Mainly it’s a literature and a film class, so we’ll be reading a lot of vampire literature,” said Mel Storm, professor of English, modern languages, and journalism. “There is a lot of good stuff and watching vampire film, of which there are really good ones.”

Shelby Hambleton | The Bulletin

“Vampire virgins,” meet every Tuesday night, typically after dark, in the fourth floor of Plumb Hall. Their practices are safe but can be nauseating. 

Their professor, Mel Storm, professor of English, modern languages and journalism, did not coin the term to describe those who abstain from vampire intercourse. He is describing the students in his class, Literary Perspectives: Vampire Literature and Film, who have not been exposed to vampire literature or filmography. 

“The most vampire I’ve seen was in Hotel Transylvania,” said Ashleigh Boyd, freshman elementary education major. 

The class lets out at 9 p.m. on Tuesdays, when the halls are empty and it’s already dark outside, adding an extra element of fear to the class. 

“I think it will make it weird,” said Kayla Snyder, freshman elementary education major. “(Storm) says there’s a few (movies) that are really creepy so I think leaving the class at 9 at night will be scary.” 

Although Storm does not believe in vampires, he said he’s enthusiastic about reading and teaching the unique worlds previous authors and directors have created for people to enjoy. 

The reason class is so entertaining for Storm to teach is the same reason he thinks it has stayed so prominent in pop-culture. 

“It tends to vary I think sort of where the culture is at a particular time. Vamp i r e s combined horror and fright, fear of creatures that are strangely like us and strangely unlike us...So it’s sort of got sex and violence all mixed in together , ” said Storm. 

Some movies will be more fun and romantic, like Love at First Bite and some will be more realistic like Dracula, almost appearing historical. Vampires have dated all the way back to the 17th century, which Storm guesses had to do with times of plague. 

“People would die and be buried, then other people would start to die,” Storm said. 

“Of ten family members. Somehow along the way people wondered if there was a connection between the first death and the second death... The belief got going that these were vampires and they would come out from their graves, they would suck the blood out of the living.” 

The stories may be fictional but the class is not for the faint of heart. 

“The notion that being bitten by a vampire can affect you with vampirism you then go on to become a vampire,” Storm said. “The notion that you can be more than a victim, you can become a victimizer. It’s a fairly complex series of matters of discomfort that go with vampire tradition.” 

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