Virtual Course | Read the Blood of Dracula

Date / Time

  • April 19, 2021
    6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
  • May 24, 2021
    6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Location

Registration

  • Tuition for this course is $35 per session, $140 for all four sessions.
  • Rosenbach members receive a 10% discount on tuition. If you have questions about discounted tuition please call (215) 732-1600 x 138 or email [email protected].
  • Not a member? We invite you to join upon registration. Click here for more information about membership.
  • This course is limited to participants who are 17 years of age or older.

Register for all four sessions or for individual sessions here:

Register

Description

Bram Stoker’s Dracula has become the ur-text of vampire fiction and lore, the vampire story that not only continues to influence vampire tales today, but also influences how we read vampire stories that came before it. We’ll begin this seminar series by talking about Stoker’s novel, its story, as well as its continuing resonance about everything related to vampires. We’ll also take a look at some of the notes the author compiled as he wrote the book and now are a part of The Rosenbach’s collections. Then each month, we’ll feature a different vampire text: from stories of vampire folklore and fiction before Dracula to contemporary vampire fiction.

Unlike our Sundays with Dracula series, these meetings will include student discussion. We’ll use the Zoom meeting format, so we can all be on the screen together, talking about our favorite vampire stories. Class size will be limited to 25 participants per session. Students are responsible for their own internet connections.

You can register for the individual monthly sessions of this course or register for all five sessions with the ticketing on this page. Learn more and register for additional monthly sessions here:

  • February 22 – “Dracula’s Guest” by Bram Stoker: Bram Stoker’s Dracula’s Guest and Other Weird Stories was published in 1914, two years after the author’s death. In the preface to the book, Stoker’s widow, Florence wrote: “To his original list of stories in this book, I have added an hitherto unpublished episode from Dracula. It was originally excised owing to the length of the book, and may prove of interest to the many readers of what is considered my husband’s most remarkable work.” The story is a fascinating look at some of Stoker’s original ideas and abandoned direction for his famous novel.  We’ll discuss the story. particularly about how it adds to Stoker’s vision, but also to the vampire mythos as a whole. We’ll also look at some of the pages from Stoker’s Notes to Dracula from The Rosenbach’s collections. This session will cover only the title story, “Dracula’s Guest.” 
  • March 22 – I Am Legend by Richard Matheson: In 2012, Matheson’s I Am Legend was named the Vampire Novel of the Century by the Horror Writers Association (fittingly, the HWA honors writers with “Bram Stoker Awards”), for being “the vampire novel that has had the greatest impact since publication of Dracula.” First published in 1954, I Am Legend presents vampirism as an apocalyptic plague that a lone survivor, Robert Neville, must conquer as he battles the undead. Stoker’s Dracula is not only present in the novel, as a book that Neville consults, but Matheson’s work recasts the supernatural vampire of legend as a scientifically real monster of the modern world. Join us for our first look at a vampire work that was inspired by Dracula. 
  • April 19 – Fledgling by Octavia Butler: Octavia Butler’s novel Fledgling replaces Stoker’s patriarchal supernatural monster myth with a novel about a black, female vampire from another world. Butler’s science-fictional take on the vampire mythos allows her novel to exist independently of vampire folklore and also enables her to explore contemporary issues of sexuality, deviance, death, race, and identity in far different ways than Stoker’s Victorian mind could have imagined.  Butler’s works, including Fledgling, are also a new volume in The Library of America series published in January 2021. Join us for an exploration of a contemporary vampire novel by a great American author.
  • May 24 – The Historian by Elizabeth KostovaElizabeth Kostova’s The Historian was the first debut novel to also hit number one on the New York Times Bestseller List in it’s first week of release, meaning more than just vampire lovers were reading this new take on the vampire myth.  Kostova weaves the historical Vlad Tepes, from whom Stoker found his name for Dracula, into a gothic bibliomystery that takes its characters on a search from Transylvania to Philadelphia (the novel ends with a fictionalized visit to see The Rosenbach’s collections). We’ll explore how Kostova’s novel responds to Stoker’s creation and the effects of bringing Dracula into the 21st Century.  

About the Instructors

Led by Edward G. Pettit, host of The Rosenbach’s Sundays with Dracula 

About Rosenbach Courses

Revisit beloved classics or experience new ones with Rosenbach courses. Book lovers delve into fiction, history, and poetry with the guidance of a literary expert and the company of other readers. See all upcoming courses.