The Evolution Of The Vampire Folklore: How And Why They Still Capture Popular Imagination

Posted on February 17, 2014

By Parboni Bose:

Vampires have found themselves rooted in the fears of people since the medieval age, but gained popularity in the 18th century when folklore of Balkan and Eastern Europe started making their way to all of Europe. Vampires are folkloric entities, traditionally viewed as the monster that grows by feeding on the blood of people. The stories that surround the vampire myth are numerous, and numerous ways have been adopted around the world, over time, to ward them off. But vampires still survived. Through stories, through media, through texts, and in 21st century it can be seen as a metaphorical victory of the vampire when the popular media finds itself so influenced by them.


It is interesting to contemplate why the vampire has survived, and Darwin helps us answer that. Vampires have survived because they have evolved. They are no more pure blood drinking evil, who go back to coffins at daybreak and hunt during the night. They are no more the undead with uncontrolled sexuality, of old ways and old times. The vampire has changed, to vegetarian, modern gadget friendly entity that has all the knowledge in the world to get hold on rings that protect them from the sun.

The vampire comes out of the dark shadow of an evil creature and lets us explore its grey shades. The new age vampire attacks strategically, goes around in modern clothes and ultra-modern cars, have their morality and often are hunting creatures other than them who pose threat to them or the humans. With reference to Twilight, The Vampire Academy series and the vampire diaries, the enemy is often the old vampire, the strigoi, the vampires from Romania or vampires that do not want to evolve. And they lose, because even in the vampire world, the old is passé and the new evolved form of vampires are here to rule the world.

It’s interesting to think what folklore will carry forward 20 years later, we already love them; we try becoming and acting like vampires, wonder what next?

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