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Predator and Prey: The Vampire Child in Novels by S.P. Somtow and John Ajvide Lindqvist
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Language, Literature and Intercultural Studies (from 2013). (Kulturvetenskapliga forskargruppen (KUFO))ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7640-0639
2017 (English)In: Edda. Nordisk tidsskrift for litteraturforskning, ISSN 0013-0818, E-ISSN 1500-1989, Vol. 104, no 2, p. 130-144Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The temporal convergence between the social and cultural preoccupation with child sexual abuse, with the pedophile as the ultimate predator, and the appearance of the child vampire as a central character in vampire fiction in the late twentieth century can be traced to genre conventions and to representations of the vampire and of the child. This article examines vampire children and child sexual abuse in three novels: S. P. Somtow’s Vampire Junction (1984) and Valentine (1992), and John Ajvide Lindqvist’s Let the Right One In (2004), and shows how they tap into contemporary sexual taboos and fears for children in order to cre- ate uncanny and Gothic effects. Highlighting that the representations of the vampire child contain a number of dichotomies, the article also relates all three novels to splatterpunk, and outlines a different trajectory for the sympathetic vampire that led to Lindqvist’s novel, which triggered the Swedish Gothic boom in the twenty-first century.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Universitetsforlaget, 2017. Vol. 104, no 2, p. 130-144
Keywords [en]
Vampire Child, The Gothic, Pedophilia, Child Sexual Abuse, S. P. Somtow, John Ajvide Lindqvist
National Category
Languages and Literature
Research subject
English
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-54958DOI: 10.18261/ISSN.1500-1989-2017-02-04OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-54958DiVA, id: diva2:1107722
Projects
Nordic GothicAvailable from: 2017-06-10 Created: 2017-06-10 Last updated: 2019-09-26Bibliographically approved

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Publisher's full texthttps://www.idunn.no/edda/2017/02/predator_and_prey

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Holmgren Troy, Maria

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