Monstrosity and Ontology

Posted: February 26, 2012 in Becoming, Bergson, Deleuze, Ecology of Sensation, Freedom, Monstrosity, Time

Monstrosity problematizes becoming. Monsters have been within me and my ecologies for so long, as an immigrant child learning English in Flushing, New York, in my filmi dreams co-evolving with the pirated Hindi and Bengali VHS library spawned by my mother’s VCR, in the desiring conjunctions of friends and lovers, in the improvised fairytales between father and daughter at bedtime. But when does the monster—a discrete figure—become a vector of mutation across a material, embodied field of force? Monstrosity promises a reorganization of force, habit, and the body, but this promise of a line of flight is always submerged under various products or static entities: the monster, technology, difference.

I consider monstrosity a certain type of event in relations of force. What is important about monstrosity, that is, what is problematic about it from the point of view of radical political practice is my central concern in this essay. I argue that this problematising of monstrosity can only happen through the careful yet ad hoc construction of a pragmatic method of potentializing capacities and returning to what Henri Bergson and Gilles Deleuze call the virtual. In what sense is duration a method of counter-actualizing the monstrous event toward the virtual? What experimental forms of thought, exchange, art, politics, and pedagogy would express this method and remain untimely in relation to the event of mutation itself? Thought revitalized by the body far from equilibrium.

To situate this argument I will contrast two figures of thought: the monster as punctum in space and time, and a thoroughgoing ontology of monstrosity rooted in duration, intensity, and the virtual. For example, in Philosophy and the Adventure of the Virtual: Bergson and the Time of Life, Keith Ansell Pearson analyzes what he sees to be the central difference between Henri Bergson’s notion of creative evolution and Alain Badiou’s theory of the event. While for the latter, the event “has no relation to duration, it is a punctuation in the order of being and time (if it can be given a temporality it is only of a retroactive kind)” (71), for Bergson the repetitions (refrains) that constitute lived duration are generative of difference in itself, a qualitative, self-varying, and distributed difference of correlated processes. As Ansell Pearson puts it,

It cannot be a question of reducing the present to the status of being little more than a mere brute repetition of the past – if it were, it would be difficult to see how time could be given in Bergson’s conception of a creative evolution (there would be nothing creative about it and there would not even be a phenomenon we could describe as evolution), but rather of thinking a duration ‘in which each form flows out of previous forms, while adding to them something new, and is explained by them as much as it explains them . . .’. (71; quoting Henri Bergson’s Creative Evolution, 1983: 362).

This nondialectical difference between on the one hand what I will call an ontology of monstrosity and on the other with what might be termed the punctum of the monster has everything to do with the nature of difference and becoming. Is the monster a discourse, is it a metaphor, analogy for something else, i.e. capitalism, patriarchy, or racism? Is the monster a representation that slides across the surface of discourse, something in the nature of a stain or trompe l’oeil? It will come as no surprise that representational analyses have dominated the thought of monstrosity in contemporary Western criticism. There are several reasons for this, but perhaps chief amongst them is the very fact that the monster has become mechanism of producing humanist value. And so the fixation on the punctum of the monster (the monster as state enemy—i.e. the monster as terrorist—as much as the monster as conceptual abyss, as a figure of abjection and exception—Homo Sacer, differance) in fact in differently positioned critiques ends up taking the monstrosity out of the monster, and after some buffing with this or that discourse is presented as the Other—all with very real effects on the life chances of actual people and populations.

But what if monstrosity comes to reenchant the world, as Prigogine and Stengers once put it? Such a reenchantment would have ontological implications because monstrosity-events are involved in the explication of intensive difference in the world. In other words, and conversely, in what sense is monstrosity an effect of a kind of experimentation or creation within intensive multiplicities? Or is monstrosity merely the cultural trace of a bodily intuition, the method of which must begin and end with duration?

  1. Katherine says:

    This post was very interesting to me because I had never thought about the monster being a result of evolution or a being a representation of a specific time or event. After reading the article and thinking about my own knowledge of monsters, I think that monstrosity is not a “punctum,” but an evolution. Monsters have been around for decades, as shown through Halberstam’s Skin Shows. In her article, she explores the medical conditions of certain time periods that could lead to monster-like behaviors. Her research shows that monsters do not remain the same across time periods; they evolve and develop according to society. We also know that popular monsters are constantly changing. Frankenstein and Dracula were once the best-known monsters of the age, but in today’s society we may be more likely to know and fear monsters such as Lord Voldemort or the Joker. Because of her research and the change in the types of monsters media portrays, I believe in the ontology of monsters.

    As you have said, “the monster has become mechanism of producing humanist value.” I believe this statement to be true, but I do not believe that humanist value is the same in all time periods and across all cultures. Sure, humans share inherently similar ideals and values, but we also have our differences in morals and beliefs. Because our humanist value is not all the same, we cannot have the same monster being the mechanism to produce that humanist value. The monster must change along with society’s expectations and norms and it must adapt to cultural differences. In order to do this, monsters must be a product of ontology.

  2. Eric Grossman says:

    I am a bit confused on what you are trying to argue in your blog post. What did you mean by “ontology of monstrosity rooted in duration”? Is the duration that you are suffering to the same as, or similar to evolution. In your analysis of the Henri Bergson quote you said, “it would be difficult to see how time could be given in Bergson’s conception of a creative evolution (there would be nothing creative about it and there would not even be a phenomenon we could describe as evolution), but rather of thinking a duration in which each form flows out of previous forms”. So, do you mean to say that evolution must exist for duration to have any real effect at all, in terms of monstrosity? Change, I think, is the key here; change and flexibility. Later in the post you ask if the monster is a discourse. The answer to this question does not have to be trapped within the confines of a tiny square box. Monstrosity has duration and is therefore naturally subject to evolution. It has the ability to change. Perhaps before monstrosity was viewed as a form of discourse, assuming that monstrosity as discourse has indeed previously existed, it may have been viewed as a medium that influenced discourse. Or, perhaps this idea of duration within the monstrous is capable of both taking on the form of the medium as well as the discourse. Either way you decided to look at it, change and ambiguity within this ontological view of monstrosity seems to be inevitable.

  3. Abhinav Gupta says:

    Halberstein draws similar connections to the conclusions you make in this blog post. She describes how “monsters are meaning machines.” Halberstein asserts that the monster constitutes as the medium itself, along with the content of the medium. Too often is the behavior of the monster interpreted as the message of the medium, when in fact it is the image of the monster that sends the purest form of information. This is especially apparent in media that portrays vampires. Vampires in horror films sink their teeth into victims and sleep in a coffin at night; however, it is the essence of the vampire in these movies that communicates the greatest message. Similarly, the “punctum of the monster” is too often misinterpreted as the message the monster communicates. This leads to “taking out the monstrosity of the monster.” Instead, we must look at the monster at a deeper level. The ontology of the monster, the reason for its existence, analyzes the essence of the monster and the reason for its development. We must consider the monster as a form of medium in order to fully understand why the concept of “monstrosity” exists in our society. Therefore, we must place the monster in context. What does the image of the monster represent? How does a monster reflect our social norms? How did the monster’s image gain prominence in our society? These are all relevant questions that must be addressed before anyone can even scratch the surface of “monstrosity” as a subject.

    I particularly like the connections you make between the monster and established systems in our society. It takes the ideas of social organization and places it into context with the idea of monstrosity. This analysis of the “ontology” of the monster places emphasis on how the image acts as a form of communication. What the image communicates is arbitrary. However, it is crucial that we look at the representation of the monster rather than its actions. For example, we tend to prematurely label the vampire instead of placing the image of the vampire into context of established social norms that keep the “monstrosity” within the monster.

    The vampire is a great example of how the “punctum” of the monster is misinterpreted as its “monstrosity”. For example, the vampire in Dracula is a manipulative creature; he hypnotizes his victims with his mesmerizing stare. This may be considered a cruel and essentially evil action, but if we take a closer look, Dracula is simply a glorified representation of our social norms. If we analyze the “ontology” of Dracula, we can see that he is a powerful, dominant, and immortal being. The image he creates is the medium that communicates these characteristics we idealize as a society

    I have some questions about some of the concepts you bring up in your post. What is this entity that you label as the virtual, and how does it apply to monstrosity? How does the dichotomy between the analyses of the present versus the past relate to the ontology of the monster?

  4. Jason Boykin says:

    Saint Thomas Aquinas is famous for writing that man cannot want something that does not exist, i.e. man wants a closer relationship to god SO god must exist! The veracity of this statement should be discussed in another blog but that sentiment can be expounded upon here. In every art form, monsters always represent something. They never exist in and of themselves for themselves – if man can fear it, it MUST be real. The monsters themselves are another story. From an anthropological standpoint, great insight into a culture can be extrapolated by simply studying its art, writings and sculptures. One does not need talk to Caravaggio (the other Michelangelo!!) rather simply look at his paintings to see what people feared most in the sixteenth century in Naples. The same approach can be taken in viewing propaganda posters in Nazi Germany. Ironically, if one looks at 20th century American art (cinema, literature and art), one could deduce that we are afraid of everything!! I find that ironic considering the US is supposedly invincible!! Although vampires don’t exist, man’s fear of vampire’s is well founded: we naturally fear no longer being atop the food chain. (Most assuredly, the phrase “dying of thirst” takes on a totally different meaning for African gazelles as they tentatively venture to the river for a drink…they know the crocodile possibly awaits!!) Long story short, we fixate on what we are afraid of, with ill regard to whether or not the fear is founded. Moreover, the “reality” of vampires is irrelevant; our fear of a being more powerful, stronger, sexier and with expanded lifetimes is the real ingénue…

  5. Miles Owens says:

    We’ve discussed in class how the vampire is a medium by which a message is conveyed – this is also explored by Halberstam and McLuhan – and how that message is informed by the society in which it’s crafted. But I don’t think that the vampire is completely derivative, because while there may be external influences on the creative decisions of the vampire maker, I don’t think that the vampire is solely a representation intended to comment on topical issues in society; I think it’s an open ended exploration that gives the audience interpretive license.

    I also think it’s really interesting to conceptualize the vampire as a product of “creative evolution” and by extension creative natural selection. Maybe the slow progression of the vampire from Stoker’s Dracula to Meyer’s Cullens is the result of the audience’s willingness to accept changes to the vampire narrative only when the changes are gradual. The radical conceptions of the vampire and other forms of monstrosity probably fell into obscurity because they didn’t have mass appeal and weren’t very profitable. This slow progression makes it so that the evolution of the vampire doesn’t seem that drastic when you compare two vampire stories made in the same decade, but when you put the 19th century vampire up against the 21st century vampire the evolution of the monster becomes really clear.

    I like the argument that from the punctum school of thought that if the vampire is just an amended version of its predecessor than it’s not actually a creative work, but I feel like it places to high of a creative burden on the vampire maker. If drawing from past representations and making calculated changes doesn’t qualify as creativity then any artist who’s ever produced anything that drew on something he’d observed would be considered derivative. In my opinion, while the authors, T.V. show producers and filmmakers of vampire narratives may be drawing on a past body of work to inform their work, it’s the things they choose to change that makes their interpretation of the vampire a creative work – another piece in the creative evolution of the vampire.

    I don’t fully understand why the ontological conception of vampires and the representational (punctum) conception of vampires are mutually exclusive to one another, or even if they are. Why can’t the vampire be a unique form of creative monstrosity and also be informed by the society in which it was created?

    Thanks a lot for taking the time to read and respond to these, I really enjoyed reading your post.

  6. Chelsea Warren says:

    The terms that keep sticking out to me with regards to monstrosity are all biological concepts such as media “ecology” and creative “evolution”. I find it fascinating that we use biological terms to describe monsters, as they are not rooted in our natural environment. Monsters are born from our experiences, perceptions, desires, and fears – thoughts that are translated into various mediums. Monsters exist spatially, just like any thought, connection, or idea is first breathed into existence from our own awareness and imaginations. Yet, biology usually requires more concrete findings. Since the monster must be seen “as [a] punctum in space and time”, every monster is constantly in state of evolution. Just as DNA is constantly coming up with new mutations, the monster is “a vector of mutation.” And just like species are in a perpetual state of change, monsters are a “species” of our imagination, subject to the same rules of nature – they are a factor of their surroundings. Ontology, defined as the “nature” of existence, is like a biological concept stating that nature functions as a system that continually tries to reach an equilibrium with itself. Our society continually tries to arrive at a point where we reach full awareness of each other and communicate fully all of our thoughts and feelings – we seek to ultimately define the monster. The “monster has become mechanism of producing humanist value” but there is no way to define the monster in this moment because as soon as one gets a grasp on the monstrosity, another element will be added and it will shift away. Just like information such as accurately plotting continents on a map, calculating the temperature outside, and counting the human population becomes a record instead of the present instantly. Just as you said we cannot “reduce the present to the status of being little more than a mere brute reputation of the past” because monsters are constantly evolving.

    • Eliza Montague says:

      Although I am not too well versed in biology, I think it is interesting to think of the monster as a “species of our imagination”. According to Rai, the monster can actually be one of two things: either the “monster as punctum in space and time” or the “thoroughgoing ontology . . . rooted in duration, intensity, and the virtual.” Although these two definitions are different, they both relate back to the idea of the biology behind the monster. As Chelsea explains, the monster is part of a rhetorical experience created by our thoughts, actions and interactions with each other. In terms of being a “punctum in space and time”, the monster is indeed always evolving based on our perceptions of ourselves and the world just like our understanding of DNA as science progresses. I think, to go away from the purely scientific perspective, that the vampire is an embodiment of our lack of understanding of the world and ourselves. Rai’s point can be explained by saying that what makes the monster a monstrosity is that we as humans will never be able to fully understand it, nor ourselves, and that inability to reach a conclusion is what creates the monstrosity. We fear what we do not understand. Just like any of the sciences, we strive to understand as much as we can but it is nearly impossible to ever reach a conclusion. In fact, there are no facts in science. There are simply highly accepted theories and hypothesis on which we base our progression. Dracula, as a monster, is a combination of evil, power, sexuality, nobility and even faint regret. Throughout the novel, the reader’s understanding of Dracula continually changes and thus so does his identity within the confinements of the story. As Rai states, “is monstrosity merely the cultural trace of a bodily intuition, the method of which must begin and end with duration?” The monster, in this case the vampire, is purely a byproduct of the metaphors of life that we have consolidated into being, and to pinpoint a certain definition of this monster would in fact destroy its value.

  7. Steph Kerlakian says:

    Quite a few points here can be compared to Fuller’s “Media Ecologies.” Fuller argues that media ecology theory comes about as a collage does – we use prior components of things and put them together, like a mash up for example. Individually, various things can have meaning, but put together a new meaning comes about. I thought that connected to one specific part of this blog post, where Rai says quotes Pearson, saying “It cannot be a question of reducing the present to the status of being little more than a mere brute repetition of the past – if it were, it would be difficult to see how time could be given in Bergson’s conception of a creative evolution (there would be nothing creative about it and there would not even be a phenomenon we could describe as evolution), but rather of thinking a duration ‘in which each form flows out of previous forms, while adding to them something new, and is explained by them as much as it explains them”. Similarly to the way that Fuller explained media ecology theory, the concept of duration is brought about when each form flows out of previous forms. Something new can be repeatedly added to them. This would be the ontology of monstrosity. The monster is something that is built upon from generation to generation, not simply something that “slides across the surface of discourse.”

    I think it is interesting how he explains that the theory of the monster as punctum in space and time is the more predominant view in Western criticism. I never really thought about it this way – that we want to use the monster as a way to produce “humanist value.” I agree with this completely (if I truly understand the gist of this paragraph). We tend to use the monster as simply the “terrorist” instead of using the monster as a metaphor for something deeper, such as “capitalism, patriarchy, or racism.” Rai says that this takes the “monstrosity out of the monster”, which I believe is true, because to me the monstrosity becomes less meaningful. The monster is rendered much more useless when it is viewed as punctum rather than the result of evolution or duration.

    I actually really enjoyed this blog post, it opened my eyes to two very different theories. To truly bring about “medium as the message,” we need to stress the ontology of the monster, which like Abi says, “analyzes the essence of the monster and the reason for its development.” I’m not an excellent reader by any means, so this blog post was hard for me to understand, but when I went over it a few times I really enjoyed the message that Rai was bringing forth.

  8. Billy Wallace says:

    The most interesting part of your blog post was the discussion contrasting the two figures of thought around monstrosities: “ the monster as punctum in space and time, and a thoroughgoing ontology of monstrosity rooted in duration, intensity, and the virtual.” I believe that the monster is both a single point in time and an ever-changing evolution. It is rather obvious that the monster is always changing. By tracing back the roots of vampires from their roots with Dracula up to what they are now as seen in TV shows and movies, we see huge changes in every aspect of the vampire. The very nature of monstrosity says that it will change with the times and has a huge correlation with societal problems, fears, etc. However, there is also duality in this statement, because while monsters may follow the times, at the time of the writing there are very specific and unique circumstances that influence why the writer chooses to display the monster in the way they do. Dracula completely represents the time it was written in, just as all monsters do throughout history. What is really intriguing about this observation is the amount of fear we have in our society today. There are thousands of monsters in our society today and each is tailored to confront a very specific fear that our society has.

  9. Alexis Newton says:

    I found it interesting that the ontology of monstrosity and the punctum of the monster are seen as two separate concepts. To me, it would seem that instead of being two separate entities, they are both the same being in different states. Using Bitzer’s view of rhetorical situation, it seems that the monster and monstrosity can be seen as/compared to the rhetorical situation and rhetorical discourse (the punctum of the monster being the rhetorical situation, and the ontology of monstrosity being the rhetorical discourse). The monster (seen as a distinct point of human fear in a specific time and place) becomes itself the rhetorical situation in which the fear created must be modified in order to appease audiences. Thus, the ontology of the monster must be changed by altering the lore and myth surrounding the monster, causing it to become the rhetorical discourse for the monster’s rhetorical situation. In the case of vampires, the vampire itself may be seen as both the punctum of the monster and the rhetorical situation. The vampire, as an entity, brings about fear on both cultural and individual levels. Because of this, modifications have occurred that have brought about drastic and fundamental changes to the lore of vampires. In turn, those alterations have changed the nature and being of vampires. The lore of vampires can thus be considered the vampire’s ontology of monstrosity and the rhetorical discourse. In this sense, I see the monster as distinct points in time, while monstrosity becomes the vector connecting those points and giving reason to their existence (the punctum of the monster becomes a solid portrayal whilst the ontology of monstrosity remains a fluid representation of evolution).

  10. Haley says:

    I was a bit confused during this article about whether it was arguing about the origins of a monster myth or how they evolve throughout time. I liked the point anyway about what brought about monstrosity, a duration of events or a single point in space, because it could be applied to either of the ideas I thought of in the article. I agree with the idea of duration and a monster “becoming” over a period of time. As Halberstein said, the monster embodies a meaning, and this meaning incorporates many layers often times, especially in the vampire which we study. Therefore, it follows that rather than a sudden event creating a monstrosity, it would be an evolution and the coming together of fears of society. The way I see it, the monster evolves from fears in society that over time come together in a monster which embodies those fears.

    The meaning that Halberstein claims is present, builds up over time and changes with society so in a sense, it can become a representation of a single point in space as well. It seems to me that an overall monster is created over a duration, meaning that the vampire myth is something that built up over time and endures in essence, however individual monsters of a time period reflect the point in time that they were created during and thus follow the punctum argument that was set forth.

  11. Elizabeth Burger says:

    Halberstam states, “The monster always represents the disruption of categories, the destruction of boundaries, and the presence of impurities and so we need monsters and we need to recognize and celebrate our own monstrosities.” This statement echoed while I read your blog because I found it correlated with the idea of the monster being a product of evolution. As society and time progress and transform, old images of monsters are overshadowed and superseded by the newer depictions. I correlate this with Darwin’s theory of natural selection. This concept incorporates the “survival of the fittest” mechanics. Traits are lost or amplified in a population according to the success of the attributes in an organism. Vampires mirror this proposed process by maintaining certain characteristics like vigor and egoism, while other qualities, such as, interactions with people, have morphed over time from optimally detached and callous to empathetic and in close interface with humankind. And still there are innovative characteristics that have spawned entirely unanticipated, such as sparkling in the sunlight and falling in love with humans.

    Halberstam’s Skin Shows mentions how monsters have existed for decades and how fluctuating medical conditions, as well as social regularities, in distinct time periods have also played a substantial role in constructing monstrosities. I distinctly liked how you drew a correlation between the monster and systems of society today. The overlap of societal structure and the exemplification of the monstrosity made me contemplate the competing factors of us as mankind influencing monstrosities and monstrosities impacting us.

    Your in-depth examination of “ontology” accentuating how the depiction of the monster acts as a form of communication parallels Halberstam’s concept of “monsters are meaning machines.” Halberstam emphasizes her claim by showcasing how the monster holds the role of both the content and the medium. Rather than the behavior or spoken words of the monster presenting the purest representation of the message, it is the image that provides the most unblemished communication. The crux of the monster itself is what demonstrates the most raw and exposed message. For instance, in the book Dracula by Bram Stoker, it is not necessarily what Dracula says that exudes the message of how incomparably powerful he is, rather it is the essence of his being. Specifically, his ability to hypnotize victims with a spellbinding stare, the core of who he is as a manipulative and mighty force is the strongest and most unabated message.

  12. Zach DeBard says:

    I really liked reading this blog post. It was very interesting and insightful. Like Katherine, I never really thought of the monster as a personification of an event or a product of evolution. After looking over “Skin Shows”, the Halberstam passage that we read in class, again, I found that many of the things Halberstam discusses about monsters (such as their development from the fears and medical conditions from the time they were created) can be explained through the evolution of the monster. For example, in Dracula, the eponymous vampire is depicted as a fairly ugly, persuasive, pale aristocrat who does his own household chores and feeds on the living at night. When Count Dracula was created, these sorts of traits (pale skin, hairy palms, pointed nose) were deemed to be strange and unusual by others and representative of something more evil. However, as time as passed humans have become more accepting with these sorts of traits and, as such, the vampire began to change. No longer were the days of ugly vampires. They have evolved from an object of feral terror to one of sensual desire. The vampire, in effect, has gone from monster to mythical creature with only a few exceptions in the past fifty years.

    I see monsters as a metaphor for what humanity fears. Many different monsters have been born out of deep-seated fears for certain traits, such as sexuality, race, gender, and even age in some cases. For example, the vampire was born from a sort of Western xenophobia for anything that could be considered “non-Western”, the zombie evolved out of the fear of death, the werewolf grew out of the fear of losing humanity. Halberstam also gives some more recent examples to help emphasize this creation method. In “Skin Shows”, she describes Buffalo Bill from Silence of the Lambs as a monster created out of the fear of strange sexual and gender orientations; she also describes Candyman from the movie of the same name as a sort of racism ad fear of corruption because of race. Giving physical form to these human fears seems to be a way to cope with these problems and give us the feeling of being able to fight them. As humanity evolves and changes, the monster must also evolve to be relevant and reflect the fears in today’s society.

  13. Jordan says:

    The message a monster conveys is commonly mistaken by the content it expresses within its own story. I am unsure whether the punctum of a monster would describe this content or merely a message that is entirely applicable to the present situation. For example, German propaganda during World War II no longer has an applicable message, however, at the time the punctum of the monster could be the words on the poster or the Anti-Semitic fears on which the monster was based. According to McLuhan the medium is the message and in essence a monster portrays a humanistic concern beyond its own actions. A vampire conveys mans fear of losing dominance in the hierarchical chain of life, and in smaller facets it discusses issues of immortality, and primal lust. This would be the ontology of this monster, but what is the punctum. It is much easier for me to discern ontology because as you stated they have become a mechanism of producing humanist values. We only have to look into ourselves to understand any given monster. This blog opened up an interesting thread of discussion on the difference between punctum and ontology of a monster, but I struggled with parts of your argument. Is the punctum of a monster not applicable to the ontolgy because the study of a monsters existence is based on the humanistic concerns that have developed over time. Likewise, can factors that contribute to the ontolgy be the punctum. For example a monster created in a movie based on the fear of terrorism after 9/11 is rooted in a current event, the punctum. But the fears of loss of life and liberty with which this monster evokes are ingrained deep in the human psyche. Hence I struggle to draw a clear line between punctum and ontology.

  14. Alicia Everitt says:

    This post made me question what exactly my interpretation of the monster is. And is monstrosity really something that is caused by the monster? Or is the monster a result of people’s attempt to physically embody monstrosity and thus defeat it? This question reminds be strongly of the point McLuhan makes in Understanding Media, where he questions the difference between media and message. I feel that the monster must result from a certain interpretation of monstrosity, and furthermore that the physical representation of a monster is the result of “monstrosity rooted in duration, intensity, and the virtual.”
    Both Fuller and McLuhan touch on the subject of the message that results from a media becoming its own media to then effect a new message. This may sound confusing, but I connected this concept strongly to the one that was made in this post about evolution. This concept was exploited in a different approach through Henri Bergson’s interpretation of monstrosity when he states that the monster may be “a duration ‘in which each form flows out of previous forms, while adding to them something new, and is explained by them as much as it explains them.” We know from Collin Jenkins’ Twilight One that there can be scientific explanations of the Vampire in specific as a monster. This leaves me to wonder whether these explanations support the ontology of monstrosity that the Vampire could be part of, or the punctum of the monster.

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