By John Edgar Browning
This provocative meeting of essays examines Dracula movies and their circulate throughout borders of nationality, sexuality, ethnicity, gender, and style because the Twenties. The essays examine the complexity Dracula embodies outdoors the traditional panorama of movies with which the vampire is sometimes linked. targeting Dracula and Dracula-type characters in movie, anime, and literature from predominantly non-Anglo markets, this anthology deals distinctive views that search to flooring depictions and reports of Dracula inside a bigger political, historic, and cultural framework.
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Extra resources for Draculas, Vampires, and Other Undead Forms: Essays on Gender, Race, and Culture
5. See, for example, the radio listings in Los Angeles Times, February 28, 1934, when it was announced that Hall would speak over station KTM. 6. Citron, “Research Center,” B8. 7. “Novel Screen Feature Delves into Astrology,” Los Angeles Times, June 16, 1938. 8. Philip K Scheuer, “Hollywood Goes Occult for New Film,” Los Angeles Times, sec. C3, March 6, 1938. 9. These Hall story ideas are detailed in Gary D. Rhodes, Lugosi: His Life in Films, on Stage, and in the Hearts of Horror Lovers ( Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 1997), 219–20.
However, in Blacula we find quite the contrary: two well-dressed, intelligent Africans of stature— Mamuwalde and Luva (rulers of an African nation)—who travel to a foreign land to seek an audience with Count Dracula (a slave trader) in an effort to end the African slave trade. This depiction of Africans, one which was unexpected and new for an American audience, represents an attempt by filmmakers to create a perspective that challenges the cultural stereotype. We are reminded that entertainment is the focus of the film when the two men of high degree result to physical force in an attempt to resolve their differences.
Many films are frequently misidentified, despite the fact that they are not ultra-low budget, campy violent films about pimps and drug dealers in stack shoes, bell bottoms and furs. 22 Despite the critics, “extratextual uses of the film,” Benshoff adds (36), “became important to the struggle for racial advancement. ” The educational opportunity provided by Blacula through its socially liberating qualities was missed by many of the viewers. Nonetheless, a number of cultural elements were present in both Blacula films that not only challenged the stereotypical images of Africans, African Americans, and homosexuals in America but provided exposure for them as well (though one might argue that the homosexual images in Blacula encouraged stereotypes and bigotries more than they challenged them).