Friday, June 7, 2013

Subculture Close to Goth: Vampires

There is no doubt in anyone's mind that goth love vampires, sometimes to the point of obsession. Many goths draw inspiration from the fashion and the settings of vampire themed novels and films, and many will admit to being insanely attracted to anything with the "Vampire" label smacked on it. However, most goths, while willing to entertain the deepest darkest desire of their black little hearts  possibility that vampires exist, will tell you that they may love/dress like/obsess over vampires, but are not really vampires themselves.
Case and point. These are simple mints. Yet they happen to be packaged in a black box, with a catchy vampire related  phrase printed on them. Normally I wouldn't care about mints very much, but I want these really badly!
With so much influence from vampires leaving its blood-spatters on the gothic subculture, its no wonder that goths are often confused with those who identify with the Vampire subculture. There is a difference however, between vampire enthusiasts and real life Vampires. Members of the Vampire subculture typically fall into four categories: 

These are the Vampires that typically get hoisted up on the "Freak" stage for others to gawk at. Sanguinarians are those that drink blood, animal or human although human is typically preferred, because of their belief that they need blood to make up for energy processing deficiencies within their bodies. These vampires believe they need to drink blood to maintain their mental or physical health. Sanguinarians never drink to drain those who they receive blood from, and most blood-letting ceremonies specify the amount of blood that is allowed to be drained from a single donor per evening.  

Michelle Belanger is an energy worker who often writes about Vampies, both Psychic and Sangunarian
Psychic Vampires
Also known as Psi-Vampires, theses members of the Vampire subculture are typically overlooked in the general hullabaloo that the Sanguinarians create from their blood drinking preferences. Psychic Vampires claim to feed on the mental energies of others, also known as the "aura" or the "pranic" energy. Many Psychic Vampires claim that by absorbing this sort of mental energy from others, they make up for their own energy deficiencies such as an unbalanced chakra or a damaged aura. 

Transcendental Vampires
The belief that Vampires possess immortal souls is the primary notion around which the subset of the Vampire subculture known as Transcendental revolves. These Vampires may identify as Sanguinarian or Psychic, but generally focus on fusing their psyche into the body of a younger vampire upon the older Vampire's death. In this way, Transcendental Vampires believe they can live forever.  


Blood Donors
The existence of these members of the Vampire subculture negates many of the fears and accusations that stem from ignorance when this particular subculture is discussed. Blood Donors are those who willingly let Vampires feed off of their blood or psychic energy. So you see, Sanguinarians do not go around attacking innocent people or luring unsuspecting humans into their midst, nor do they abuse their Blood Donors. In the Vampire subculture, Donors and Vampires are considered equal and both are given certain rights within their communities, however, Donors are generally expected to be submissive to the Vampires. Because Donors are difficult to come across (the blood types have to match and you probably aren't going to find a person who will willingly be fed off of by a Vampire at your average dinner party) Vampires hold their Donors in the utmost respect and are often quite protective of them. 


The Vampire lifestyle as a whole is considered a subculture as well as an alternative fashion scene, although many Vampires will dress in relatively normal clothes on a day to day basis in order to deflect discrimination and hateful comments that stem from ignorance. Vampirism is closely related to sexual and fetish practices, and this sort of eroticism is present in many works of Vampire fiction, from Dracula to True Blood. Generally speaking, vampires are sexy! They're mysterious night stalking beings that kill in quite a sensual way (remember, members of the Vampire subculture never kill their Donors). The Vampire subculture is usually thought to share some ground with practitioners of BDSM, and some Vampires consider themselves Sadomasochistic, which Wikipedia describes as:

"Receiving pleasure—often sexual—from acts involving the infliction or reception of pain or humilitaion. A subset of BDSM, practitioners of sadomasochism usually seek out sexual gratification from these acts, but often seek out other forms of pleasure as well. While the terms sadist and masochist specifically refer to one who either enjoys giving pain (sadist), or one who enjoys receiving pain (masochist), many practitioners of sadomasochism describe themselves as at least somewhat of a switch, or someone who can receive pleasure from either inflicting or receiving pain."

Goths and Vampires are often grouped together by the mainstream who see people wearing black, and refer to them as the same. The Vampire subculture is generally thought to have evolved from goth sometime around the 2000's. More often than not, both subcultures are misrepresented in the eyes of the common population, with phrases such as "Oh those bloodsucking freaks" or "Those nutters who all think they're Vampires" getting thrown around a lot. Its easy to see where the errors come from as the subcultures do share a lot of crossover  particularly in their physical appearance which is what most people are going to go by when labeling a group of individuals. 
A fair number of goths will tell you that Vampires are their favorite supernatural beings if you happen to ask them, and I'm willing to bet most Vampires would get along well with goths. Friction sometimes crops up between the two groups as some goths believe that Vampires are "trying too hard." You're going to get different sets of open mindedness in any group, and there are always some people out there that just don't buy what Vampires are doing, and are forever going to see them as people with an inflated sense of self importance (from this view point it does sound a tad bit big headed to consider yourself a member of a race that is generally thought to be smarter, stronger and more attractive than humans) or just a little unhinged. Despite these opinions, Vampires will continue to live peacefully among us, leading their preferred lifestyle, no matter what others think of them. 

This is part one of the History Channel documentary on Vampires that I watched 
a few years ago. It is quite informative! I believe you can watch the whole thing on Youtube now. 
And you can all draw your own conclusions from this one. The rest of this investigation is also available on youtube 

Song of the Day: 


  1. I love this. I've been really inspired by Vampire fashion the past and might have to break out a new pair of fangs again. :3

    1. Thanks! You should definitely check out Michelle Belanger's works, she's very interesting. I had some fangs once, and I wore them to school and freaked all my teachers out :D The Scarecrow ones really are the best!