call for papers

i received the following about a week ago in my inbox:

PROTEUS: A Journal of Ideas


Vampires, Parasites, and Invaders in Nature and Society Bloodsucking, parasitism and invasion have long haunted our human imaginations and played a crucial role in shaping our natural world. Proteus: A Journal of Ideas seeks essays and scholarly articles that explore the themes of parasitism and alien invasion from a wide variety of disciplinary perspectives–including those of biology, cultural studies, sociology, philosophy, psychology, economics, and literary theory. Articles might analyze how authors and/or societies have represented vampires in literature, folklore, or the media. Or the biological processes underlying parasitism or alien invasion among individual or multiple species within an ecosystem. Articles that discuss the economic, social, and biological impact of parasites and invasive species on human populations are encouraged. Theme-related photographs, poetry, and creative writing are welcome.

Manuscripts accepted — NOW until AUGUST 17, 2009

Perferred format – Chicago Manual of Style, in text with endnotes.

Publication date October 2009.

Submit manuscripts electronically to

Proteus (717) 477-1206

for an academic (that’s me!*) who is interested in vampirism (anybody?) that looks very tempting, doesn’t it? and seeing as there’s been one or two recent publications on the subject of real vampires (see my previous post) i’m thinking that there might be scope for an article on the subject.

i’m mentally sketching out two possibilities. the first would involve talking with the folk at suscitatio enterprises about whether and to what extent non-vamp (or also vamp) donors had responded to the VEWRS & AVEWRS questionnaires. if we have even just 50 non-vamp donors it’d probably be enough to do something with it (and going by anecdotal evidence i think a fairly important contingent of vampires are also at least occasionnally donors, so there would have to be something, but i would prefer to work on non-vamp donors). also, i would dearly love to get my hands on their database.

the second approach would be ethnographic, and closer to what i’m doing anyway. i would be using publicly available documents and discussions (e.g. the forum at blackswanhaven) and perhaps (if the powers could be made to agree) from closed spaces (e.g. the vcmb). i’d also want to interview a number of donors. from that one could construct a narrative of what it is to be a donor. perhaps an extra advantage would be that, while e.g. Laycock had to prevent himself from “going native”, i am already native in both communities.

the only real problem i see is that i’m also supposed to be finishing my research project by late august. doing both would be a considerable job.

here’s the final detail, which is rather neat: you know who forwarded me that CFP? my little sister. she really is neat. (though now i wonder how much she knows about what i get up to at night…).

*okay, i’m still working on finishing my degree, i need to do my research project over summer. i’ve started blogging it at assisted dying. afterwards i’ll be a sociologist – allegedly.

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