In which a bunch of scientists over-analyze Bram Stoker's Dracula

Okay, let's try again.

Almond BR. Monstrous infants and vampyric mothers in Bram Stoker's "Dracula". Int J Psychoanal. 2007 Feb;88(Pt 1):219-35.

"Vampires and the state of being "undead" are representations of intense oral needs, experienced in a context of passivity and helplessness."


Stiles A. Cerebral automatism, the brain, and the soul in Bram Stoker's Dracula. J Hist Neurosci. 2006 Jun;15(2):131-52.

"I suggest that Stoker's vampire protagonist dramatizes the pervasive late-nineteenth-century fear that human beings are soulless machines motivated solely by physiological factors."


Raines JM, Raines LC, Singer M. Dracula - Disorders of the self and borderline personality organization. Psychiatr Clin North Am. 1994 Dec;17(4):811-26. Review.

"...Bram Stoker's novel Dracula can best be understood as a dramatic, hyperbolic, and fantastic expression of themes consistent with contemporary psychoanalytic conceptions of borderline personality disorder organization."


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It seems that during the process of writing Dracula, Stoker lived very near to a "mental asylum" largely occupied by advanced syphilis cases whose, ah, influence can (also) readily be found in his novel.

By Pierce R. Butler (not verified) on 12 Aug 2008 #permalink

haha these are AWESOME. I'm not entirely sure that the second one should have made it into neurosci though. Certainly great ideas and wonderful writing but I'm not entirely sure it counts as science.

Those analyses really bite....

Crazy, I always thought that vampires were warning tales about people who live near us but don't act as a part of our culture. Specifically, why it is better to resent them than to accept them. In a way this includes the last paper, but it more of a warning against sociopaths, thieves, and cult leaders. But, then again, I lack citation.

Excellent post; it's good to have you back.

Welcome back. I kept checking now and then, but began to think your suicides posting was indicative of your plan for the blog. Although following suicides up with a post about the undead is a trifle ominous.

There's a scholarly book, "Vampires, Burial, and Death" which argues that folklore about vampires (and, presumably other undead) originated because people aren't really very well acquainted with what corpses do during decomposition. There may well be something to this, since pre-Stoker vampires tended to be described such that they resembled bloated corpses, not suave aristocrats or, say, Brad Pitt.

Well, pale people don't get sunlight so they get a bit unhappy. I also have some experience with energy, or chi. It's pretty much impossible to suck happiness out of an unhappy person. But kids and such are like little nucular reactors.

You don't try to suck and hoard energy from others. That's black magic. If you have a circuit going and you share the energy and let it flow you are doing it right.

Or you suck out some shitty, convert it to better, and release it.

The healthier you are the more of this energy-circuit stuff you can handle. Or some can handle more than others, if they have an experienced soul, or something.

Anyway, vampires suck. Like those who go and surround themselves with a collection of pets that they keep mindfucked. Confuse someone else and you think you are sucking out what you want, but it's always a case of energy exchange.

Or something like that.

By Henkisser (not verified) on 20 Aug 2008 #permalink


This is your advisor. Stop monkeying around with this crap and get back to studying particulate matter and its impact on pleural thickening in mine workers.

Professor Peter Pricklesdorf, PhD

By mental wimp (not verified) on 21 Aug 2008 #permalink