Imaginative Geographies, Dracula and the Transylvania ‘Place Myth’

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Issue: Volume 2, Issue 2, 2008

Author Affiliations


Department of Geography, Liverpool Hope University, Hope Park, Liverpool L16 9JD United Kingdom
Email: duncan_light@yahoo.com

Abstract


Imaginative geographies have become a central concept in Anglo-American cultural geography in recent years. We all form knowledge, ideas and beliefs in our minds about what other places are ‘like’. In some cases these ideas may so strong that a distinct place ‘myth’ develops. In this paper I focus on the Western place myth of Transylvania. In the Western imagination this region has come to be constructed as a remote, backward, sinister place on the very edge of Europe, where vampires and the supernatural reign unchecked. I examine the historical development of this place myth in the West with particular reference to the role of popular culture in reproducing and circulating this myth on a global scale. I also seek to situate this place myth in its broader historical, political and social contexts.

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