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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: For the "Supes" We Just Can't Live Without. Introduction: "If a Tree Falls in the Woods, It's Still a Tree Ain't It?" PART ONE: "I USED TO HATE VAMPIRES, UNTIL I GOT TO KNOW ONE": VAMPIRE-HUMAN ETHICS. 1 To Turn or Not to Turn: The Ethics of Making Vampires (Christopher Robichaud). 2 Dressing Up and Playing Human: Vampire Assimilation in the Human Playground (Jennifer Culver). 3 Pets, Cattle, and Higher Life Forms on True Blood (Ariadne Blayde and George A. Dunn). PART TWO: "LIFE-CHALLENGED INDIVIDUALS": THE POLITICS OF BEING DEAD. 4 Signed in Blood: Rights and the Vampire-Human Social Contract (Joseph J. Foy). 5 "Honey, If We Can't Kill People, What's the Point of Being a Vampire?": Can Vampires Be Good Citizens? (William M. Curtis). 6 Un-True Blood: The Politics of Artificiality (Bruce A. McClelland). PART THREE: "THEIR VERY BLOOD IS SEDUCTIVE": EROS, SEXUALITY, AND GENDER. 7 Coming Out of the Coffin and Coming Out of the Closet (Patricia Brace and Robert Arp). 8 "I Am Sookie, Hear Me Roar!": Sookie Stackhouse and Feminist Ambivalence (Lillian E. Craton and Kathryn E. Jonell). 9 Sookie, Sigmund, and the Edible Complex (Ron Hirschbein). PART FOUR: "I AM ACTUALLY OLDER THAN YOUR JESUS": NATURAL, SUPERNATURAL, AND DIVINE. 10 Let the Bon Temps Roll: Sacrifice, Scapegoats, and Good Times (Kevin J. Corn and George A. Dunn). 11 Are Vampires Unnatural? (Andrew Terjesen and Jenny Terjesen). 12 Does God Hate Fangs? (Adam Barkman). PART FIVE: "OUR EXISTENCE IS INSANITY": THE METAPHYSICS OF SUPERNATURAL BEINGS. 13 A Vampire's Heart Has Its Reasons That Scientifi c Naturalism Can t Understand (Susan Peppers-Bates and Joshua Rust). 14 Keeping Secrets from Sookie (Fred Curry). 15 Vampires, Werewolves, and Shapeshifters: The More They Change, the More They Stay the Same (Sarah Grubb). CONTRIBUTORS: "I Don't Know Who You Think You Are, but Before the Night Is Through . . .." INDEX: Sookie's Words of the Day.
GEORGE A. DUNN is a lecturer at the University ofIndianapolis and Ningbo Institute of Technology, ZhejiangUniversity, China. He contributed to Battlestar Galactica andPhilosophy, X-Men and Philosophy, Terminator andPhilosophy, Twilight and Philosophy, Alice inWonderland and Philosophy, Iron Man and Philosophy, and Mad Men and Philosophy. REBECCA HOUSEL, a former professor of writing and popularculture, is now an author and editor serving on editorial advisoryboards for the Journal of Popular Culture and the Journalof American Culture. She coedited Twilight andPhilosophy and X-Men and Philosophy. WILLIAM IRWIN is a professor of philosophy at King'sCollege. He originated the philosophy and popular culture genre ofbooks as coeditor of the bestselling The Simpsons and Philosophyand has overseen recent titles, including Batman andPhilosophy, House and Philosophy, and Alice inWonderland and Philosophy.
Can John Locke's memory theory explain the nature of vampire identity? Is there a PETA message buried in True Blood's take on vampire-human relations? These and other biting issues constitute the smart and amusing essays in the latest William Irwin-edited Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series (after Mad Men and Philosophy). Authors invoke the likes of Kant, Sartre, and Freud and approach their topics with the seriousness of a devoted fan balanced with the levity and wit the series is known for. More than one essay focusing on God and vampires duplicate efforts, but highlights include Christopher Robichaud's examination of consent in creating a vampire, William M. Curtis's discussion of metaphor and the mainstreaming of blood suckers, Ron Hirschbein's exploration of the "Edible Complex," and Patricia Brace and Robert Arp's analysis of the not-so-subtle similarities between vampire rights and gay rights. These easily-digestible philosophical morsels are perfect for fans of Jon Stewart and anyone else who likes to laugh while they learn. (June) ( PW.com, August 16, 2010)