Compare/Contrast Paper

Darius White Michael Duffy TSEM: Blood, Lust, and the American Dream 13 October 2012 The articles I have selected all involve metaphorical drugs and addictions in vampire media. The in class article I have chosen is titled Not to Be Toyed With’: Drug Addiction, Bullying and Self-empowerment in Buffy the vampire Slayer by Rob Cover and it involves the fictional character, Willow, and her addiction to magic. The article shares several similarities with the peer reviewed article Battling Addictions in Dracula by Kristina Aikens, and “[I]s it dangerous? Alternative readings of “drugs” and “addiction” in Buffy the Vampire Slayer by Jo Latham. All three articles explain the drug references in vampire media albeit with different points and interpretations. They briefly explain what an addiction is and how it applies to that particular subject. But two articles in particular, Not to Be Toyed With and “[I]s it dangerous? ” both mention the negative aspects of peer pressure and bullying and what effect it can have on someone’s psyche specifically on the character Willow.
Both articles explain how Willow’s magical curiosity began to manifest into something darker through time. The more she used magic, the more she relied on it and the more she became reluctant to control herself. She also began to show signs of an addiction, including withdrawal. The articles differ from Not to Be Toyed With in the sense that they explain drug use using different examples. “[I]s it dangerous? ” takes a more in depth look in how Willow’s addiction causes her to become more compulsive, and how her friendships begin to crumble the more she hurts others with her magic.
The article states that “The show succeeds in depicting drug use and its consequences as a complex web of dynamic intra-action between personal agency and structural forms of social restraints. Magic is pharmAkon: poison and cure, and the distinction arises from how it is used: for good or evil, productively or destructively. ” It states that the show attempts to show that drugs aren’t entirely bad, but can be used constructively. It evens takes it a step further by comparing her to other drug abusers and the medical aspect of addictions.

It mentions that there may be properties of magic that has universal effects that may result in addiction, not the magic itself. In Battling Addictions in Dracula, It doesn’t use magic as a metaphor for drugs, but it compares drug abusers to a vampire addicted to human blood, more specifically the war on drugs. It briefly mentions the various drugs and makes several references to vampire culture. It also states that the drug use in Dracula refers to real life instances where doctors would try to control drug consumption during that era.
The article elaborates further by stating, “Doctors carefully regulate the use of drugs in the novel, implying that disaster will surely ensue if the drugs are used improperly, which is demonstrated when Lucy dies as an indirect result of the maids being drugged. ” Works Cited Aikens, Kristina. “Battling Addictions in Dracula. ” Manchester University/Gothic Studies, 17 Mar. 2010. PDF. 13 October 2012. http://ehis. ebscohost. com. proxy-tu. researchport. umd. edu/eds/pdfviewer/pdfviewer? id=0737b5e2-8766-4318-a13a-9ef14709da71%40sessionmgr111&vid=3&hid=120 Latham, Jo. “[I]s it dangerous? Alternative readings of “ drugs” and “addiction” in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. ” Watcher Junior. June 2010. Web. 13 October 2012. http://www. watcherjunior. tv/05/latham. php Cover, Rob. “Not to be Toyed With’: Drug addiction, Bullying and Self-empowerment in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. “Continuum: Journal of Media & Cultural Studies 2005 19(1): 85-101.

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