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Daughters of Darkness$
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Kat Ellinger

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781800348295

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2022

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781800348295.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 28 June 2022

Countess Dracula

Countess Dracula

(p.57) Chapter Three: Countess Dracula
Daughters of Darkness

Kat Ellinger

Liverpool University Press

This chapter probes into the history surrounding the real life serial killer Countess Elizabeth Bathory. It also unveils several filmic interpretations of her story, with a view to establishing just where Daughters of Darkness fits into the overall body of work concerning the infamous 'Blood Countess'. Outright aggressive, cruel, and violent women have always been something of a taboo subject throughout Western culture. The chapter considers the challenges of portraying a female killer, as doing so can step right into realm of the taboo, which makes people uncomfortable. It is perhaps because of this that Bathory has not enjoyed as much celebration on screen as her male counterpart Dracula; himself in part said to be inspired by historical figure Vlad Tepes, otherwise known as 'Vlad the Impaler'. The chapter concludes with an analysis of the sadist and class themes inherent in Kümel's film.

Keywords:   Countess Elizabeth Bathory, Dracula, filmic interpretations, serial killer, female killer, sadism, class themes

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