Saturday, May 23, 2009

Vampires and the Women Who Love Them

Ok ... you know that I don't keep too many personal secrets close to the chest. You all are going to find out about me without too much prodding. So, here's another one. I absolutely LOVE vampire smut. There is this entire genre of books that are about vampires and the women they love.

The basic plot. A long-lived vampire falls for a beautiful human woman. He is stronger than anyone can imagine, but lonely and the loneliness sometimes drives him to despair. The woman is nearly always a very strong female, but when she discovers that this incredible man desires her, she is willing to learn to live in his world. She always brings something to the relationship that draws out the humanity in the vampire and for him, her safety and happiness is paramount.

The funny thing is, the vampires are always drop-dead gorgeous, powerful men and the women generally have some type of hangup about their physical appearance, but this man in their life sees only the incredible beauty of the woman they love.

Can you see why a girl might enjoy these books?

Now, I also finally have taken the time to begin watching "Buffy, the Vampire Slayer." It was always on a church night when it began airing in the late 90s and I just never got around to starting from the beginning so I could enjoy the show. I love this show! But, one of the things that I enjoy the most is the fearless attitude and strength of will that the female characters have. They don't diminish any of the men around them and each person has their foibles and weaknesses.

This is a concept that is so alien in so many ways, yet one in which I have struggled for a long time. The patriarchal society has always been in charge, rarely do we see anything other than that setup. In my Greek textbook, I read about the society that women were treated as minors for the entire lives. They couldn't own property, had no place in public life and could only have power in their homes. Do you know that the word "Economics" comes from the word "Oikonomikos" which means 'management of the oikos - or the home.' Women weren't allowed to speak with strangers and if they ever encountered them along the road, they fled to the protection of their homes. It was a disgrace for women to stand around with young men.

We encounter this all throughout the Old and New Testaments as different societies tried to deal with women. During the time of Paul, more and more freedoms were being taken by women and sometimes they refused to take them without destroying the men around them, so conflict arose and the apostle seemed to always be dealing with that.

As cultures ebb and flow, as societies transition from one to the other, women's roles change and transform. Popular culture in the US seems to give more credence to the independence of women and the acknowledgement of their personal power. It's not like that in other parts of the world today. And in many homes even in the United States, women are stripped of their humanity and any vestige of personal empowerment. I watch this happen with family and close friends and can't believe what I see sometimes.

I like the idea of strong women ... in popular television, in books and in life. If you hang around me very much, you will find that I encourage you to be everything you want to be. If you don't hang around me? Find someone that does encourage you to reach for your dreams. Wow ... you can be amazing ... you are a treasure in God's kingdom! Never forget that.


tlksimpson said...

Ooooooo...I'm excited for you to get to the last two seasons of Buffy...let me know! Steve and I watched religiously...Angel, too.

So I remember you talking about Dark Shadows (the original) when I was in High School and then the remake came out....I loved them both!

Rebecca said...

yes! girl power! I love it...I guess to hang out with the living dead you would have to be a little thick skinned eh? (oooh bad pun I know but I couldn't resist)

Did you see Robert Pattinson signed on for Breaking Dawn?