Compare/Contrast Paper

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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...
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