Are Vampires Dead?

Welcome to our debate forum where we will have hot topics for you to discuss weekly. Just as a reminder we will only leave topics open for the week and then start a new one.
Locked
Be My Escape
Totally Inside Jacob's Mind
Posts: 448
Joined: Sun Sep 24, 2006 6:07 pm
Location: Pushing Amor out of the way so I can Play Pinball with Jacob

Are Vampires Dead?

Post by Be My Escape » Sun Jun 15, 2008 8:47 am

Are we meant to think of vampires as dead? Or is this only werewolf prejudice? How far are we warranted to see the probable outcome of BD as a story about "two dead teens" ?



**Also note that December is a mod in this forum. What she says goes!! Thank you
Last edited by Be My Escape on Sun Jun 15, 2008 8:03 pm, edited 2 times in total.
[img]http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj45/jenlam26/engagment.png[/img]

December
Banging out dents with Tyler
Posts: 384
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2007 5:16 pm
Location: Ars Longa Vita Brevis

Post by December » Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:00 pm

Being changed into a vampire is a lot like death. Your human life is over; what remains to you is like the half-life of ghosts and demons and spirits: eternal, incorruptible, sleepless and unbreathing, cut off from your past, robbed of your body, barred from the possibility of ever having an ordinary life among humans again -- all but incapable of growth or alteration. If life is change, then vampires are scarcely alive. It's not hard to feel as Jake does that Bella's becoming a vampire for Edward comes pretty close to dying for him.

But Stephenie seems not quite to want to go there. No one in this story, except perhaps the werewolves, talks about the Cullens as dead. Monstrous, yes, Cast out of the circle of humanity, yes. Damned, possibly. But stone cold dead, seemingly not. Stephenie writes and talks of Bella giving up her human life or her humanity for Edward, but not life itself.

Edward's heart stopped beating in 1918 and his living flesh turned to incorruptible stone -- but it's hard to think of him as dead. Partly because of the way he begins to grow and change again under the influence of Bella's love. Partly because the Cullens have such a palpable zest for their lives. For lots of reasons, actually. There is an ambiguity in how we are invited to think about this. Are Stephenie's vampires supernatural beings trapped in a limbo between life and death, or merely (as both Stephenie and Edward have suggested) a different species?

Stephenie herself seems undecided about what exactly it is that Bella is choosing. If it is something less than death, it is still much, much more than simply metamorphosing -- like a caterpillar -- into a different kind of creature. Can she have it both ways? How much like death does becoming a vampire have to be, for us to take Bella's choice as seriously as Stephenie wants us to?
[img]http://i236.photobucket.com/albums/ff118/DecembersPhotos/icefogbranchesphotocropmore.jpg[/img]
adultae lexiconum recipientes nuntiis singulis

Unchallenged
La Push Tour Guide
Posts: 4211
Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2006 10:09 am
Location: Next best place for forks unpredictable weather: Kicking it back with Rpatzz in London
Contact:

Post by Unchallenged » Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:13 pm

i dont think vampires are dead, they are the living dead,

the vampire did not die
the human life it once had dies

and little by little like edward, those human traits begin to show, as a part of human life you missed
[img]http://i35.tinypic.com/11qmhx4.gif[/img][img]http://i37.tinypic.com/imtgu1.gif[/img]
[color=cyan]S[/color][color=yellow]C[/color][color=violet] Squared[/color] [color=red]<3[/color]
http://theinconstantmoon.deviantart.com/

Bella_S_Black
Often Mistaken for a Bear
Posts: 7061
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2008 1:13 am
Location: England

Post by Bella_S_Black » Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:16 pm

They are sort of dead. Like their bodies are iced up, and they can't grow old. But they are not obviously dead, because they can still think etc.
And if they were completely dead, then they would decompose.....or maybe they're just too cold and icy for that to happen :roll:
[img]http://i299.photobucket.com/albums/mm318/twilightfan91/loveyoumore.jpg[/img]
[img]http://i299.photobucket.com/albums/mm318/twilightfan91/blackpacl.jpg[/img]
[color=pink]SC Squared![/color]

Unchallenged
La Push Tour Guide
Posts: 4211
Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2006 10:09 am
Location: Next best place for forks unpredictable weather: Kicking it back with Rpatzz in London
Contact:

Post by Unchallenged » Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:23 pm

so its like they are in limbo,

something out of the norm and in between heaven and hell
[img]http://i35.tinypic.com/11qmhx4.gif[/img][img]http://i37.tinypic.com/imtgu1.gif[/img]
[color=cyan]S[/color][color=yellow]C[/color][color=violet] Squared[/color] [color=red]<3[/color]
http://theinconstantmoon.deviantart.com/

Hereandthere
Banging out dents with Tyler
Posts: 377
Joined: Tue May 20, 2008 10:55 pm
Location: Tennessee
Contact:

Post by Hereandthere » Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:23 pm

I don't really see them as dead but frozen and a bit in limbo between life and death. They are no longer human and do not have the desires of a human (food, breathing, etc.) but they can certainly have human or human-like emotions. But we do not know what has happened to their souls or spirits. Will they be judged on their actions or not when and if their exsistence is eventually terminated? That's really why I see it as more of a limbo or purgatory than anything else because they are essentially stuck where they are not being truly alive or truly dead.
Here, there, and everywhere...that's where you'll find me.

[img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v314/RaiderCrash89/edward.jpg[/img] [img]http://i223.photobucket.com/albums/dd257/RensFeathers/Random/EdsPeople.gif[/img]

[url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FdamLgrH9hM]Check out Twilight for Dummies![/url] :D

SEEIloveEdward
Settled in Forks
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:22 pm

Nah, they're not dead

Post by SEEIloveEdward » Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:26 pm

I feel like they're half dead, like if they die as vampires they'll be dead full, right not they're missing their human lives.

Basically I agree with alot of what you've all said. :)

Jacob's_Wolf_Girl
Settled in Forks
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 1:29 pm
Location: La Push
Contact:

Post by Jacob's_Wolf_Girl » Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:33 pm

December wrote:Being changed into a vampire is a lot like death. Your human life is over; what remains to you is like the half-life of ghosts and demons and spirits: eternal, incorruptible, sleepless and unbreathing, cut off from your past, robbed of your body, barred from the possibility of ever having an ordinary life among humans again -- all but incapable of growth or alteration. If life is change, then vampires are scarcely alive. It's not hard to feel as Jake does that Bella's becoming a vampire for Edward comes pretty close to dying for him.
Yes. She gives up everything that is considered life. Plus, her heart literally stops beating, the blood in her veins dry up. For all biological and emotional and social purposes, Bella, as a vampire, would be dead.
But Stephenie seems not quite to want to go there. No one in this story, except perhaps the werewolves, talks about the Cullens as dead. Monstrous, yes, Cast out of the circle of humanity, yes. Damned, possibly. But stone cold dead, seemingly not. Stephenie writes and talks of Bella giving up her human life or her humanity for Edward, but not life itself.
In which case, we could ask a follow up question. Is the thought of vampires as being dead a werewolf prejudice? OR Is the thought of vampires as living dead/living/not dead (however you want to put it) simply a vampire prejudice? Who is to say who is right or not? We do get both sides from Stephenie through both Jacob (a werewolf) and Edward and the other Cullens (vampires)...and what Bella thinks, but she's new and doesn't know more than any of them. Just because Bella may not think of it as dying...or any of the Cullens...does that make it true?
Edward's heart stopped beating in 1918 and his living flesh turned to incorruptible stone -- but it's hard to think of him as dead. Partly because of the way he begins to grow and change again under the influence of Bella's love. Partly because the Cullens have such a palpable zest for their lives. For lots of reasons, actually. There is an ambiguity in how we are invited to think about this. Are Stephenie's vampires supernatural beings trapped in a limbo between life and death, or merely (as both Stephenie and Edward have suggested) a different species?
I actually do see it as a limbo. It's complicated sure. But think of ghosts. Nobody denies they are dead even though in many stories they interact and show emotion, etc. etc. Why are vampires any different? But again, it comes down to points of view. We don't know the truth until Stephenie comes out and says it. Right now, it's all on point of view.
Stephenie herself seems undecided about what exactly it is that Bella is choosing. If it is something less than death, it is still much, much more than simply metamorphosing -- like a caterpillar -- into a different kind of creature. Can she have it both ways? How much like death does becoming a vampire have to be, for us to take Bella's choice as seriously as Stephenie wants us to?
For me, I think that is very frustrating. I feel that she unknowingly started a heated debate between fans worldwide. It's a touchy subject. If becoming a vampire is dying, then Stephenie is commentating on suicide. We all know of the Romeo and Juliet parallel Meyer attempts to make between the two couples. I don't think Meyer can have it both ways, to be perfectly honest. And also, I think that until she comes out and states the "facts" of her world, people are going to have their opinions. I admit that I will remain so stubborn. But she's got to be very careful.

I, personally, believe that vampires are dead, and that the reason they still are on earth and can interact...it would be something like Purgatory...or Limbo. They're dead, but they haven't gone on to the afterlife. So for Bella to choose death is to commit suicide...or have Edward commit assisted suicide. Is that the message we should get? That if it's in the "name of love," it's okay? That it's okay to give up her life if Bella feels inferior to Edward, feels self-conscious and feels it's the only way to protect her family? Not my ideal message at the end of these books.

And, again, I think people are going to think one way or the other until Meyer comes out and says it is or is not dying to become a vampire. (And in some cases, depending on your point of view or morality or whatever, some may always keep their opinion regardless of a straight-out answer. I still have yet to decide if I'm one of those individuals.)
[img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/harohe4ever/Twilight%20Series/103.png[/img] [img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/harohe4ever/Twilight%20Series/104.png[/img] [img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/harohe4ever/Twilight%20Series/106.png[/img]

Lilybel
Jump Starting Bella's Truck
Posts: 101
Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2006 6:17 pm
Location: Sweet Home Chicago

Post by Lilybel » Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:35 pm

I agree, especially with what December said.

Biologically speaking, vampires are stone cold dead. No questions about it. But their lives were not ended when they were changed. Yes, they don't technically live . . . yet they do. I think that limbo idea applies well. Their minds and (yes, Edward) souls are alive, their bodies move and function, but their tissue is dead and frozen in time, becoming as hard marble. Not part of the living, but not dead either.

Alive, living, functioning . . . but not. It's hard to put my thoughts into words!

Two dead teens? Very likely, if everything goes to plan. But it won't because a book needs a plot and a conflict.

EDIT:
Jacob's_Wolf_Girl wrote:I, personally, believe that vampires are dead, and that the reason they still are on earth and can interact...it would be something like Purgatory...or Limbo. They're dead, but they haven't gone on to the afterlife. So for Bella to choose death is to commit suicide...or have Edward commit assisted suicide. Is that the message we should get? That if it's in the "name of love," it's okay? That it's okay to give up her life if Bella feels inferior to Edward, feels self-conscious and feels it's the only way to protect her family? Not my ideal message at the end of these books.
I completely agree with you about the "in the name of love" message. I can't believe that a series that centers so much around the humanity of the main character would end up with her committing suicide! I don't trust Bella's reasons to become a vampire. I've said before that she isn't comfortable with herself around Edward and the Cullens, and it might be feeding her desire to be changed.

ouisa
Ignoring Renee's E-mails
Posts: 764
Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 4:09 am
Location: Being Dorks near Forks

Post by ouisa » Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:41 pm

Like many things in the Meyer universe I don't think "alive" and "dead" are black and white. (just like "good and "evil" aren't). The Cullens challenge us to redefine the ordinary (and our selves). So it depends what you choose to use to define alive and dead.

Hearts beating? Nope....dead
Breathing? Well most of the time unless Bella's smelling particularly edible that day....okay not so dead
Brain Activity....well most the time I think Edward would do better with a little less brain activity.....alive
Reproduction well despite what fan fic says.....but this doesn't make them dead. After all many couples can't have children for a multitude of reasons. Chicken Pox makes you sterile, so does vampire venom....still alive.
The ability to learn and grow as December mentions....well no and yes. Edward once talks about how life (and after life) necessitates progression. And although he doesn't see it Edward's learned and grown a lot through Eclipse. So it can be done it's just very very very hard (and might necessitate a crowbar or twelve.....alive

So I'm not sure how exactly to choose if they are dead or alive...I vote that they just are neither. They are a unique state of being that we mundane humans cannot define.

ETA: I've never seen it a "suicide." Maybe because I'm less on the Cullens=dead side. I see it as in any marriage she's giving up her old "life" for a new one. Yeah, it's a little more drastic than putting on a ring, changing your last name and moving in with a guy but Edward isn't ordinary, neither is the sacrifices required to have a life as his wife.
Last edited by ouisa on Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:52 pm, edited 4 times in total.
[img]http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y138/ouisa/gravity3.jpg[/img]

adultae lexiconum recipientes nuntiis singulis

Locked

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests