Over the course of the past twenty-five years, as neoliberal economics has transformed the geopolitical landscape, monsters have overrun popular culture. This book explores literary, televisual, filmic and dramatic works from distant and diverse countries. It traces the vampire's evolution from the nineteenth-century past of industrial capitalism to the neoliberal present's accelerated violence and corrupt precarity, and discusses the NBC television mini-series Dracula, perfectly encapsulating our own post-recessionary subjectivity. The book addresses state capitalism but turns readers' attention away from the vampire and towards the ghost, focusing on the ways in which such spectral figures have come to dominate new German theatre. On the biotechnology sector, the book presents three examples: cinematic depictions of the international organ trade in Asia, the BAFTA award winning three-part series In the Flesh broadcast in BBC3, and literary representations of the dehumanised South African poor. The book moves from the global to the local, and charts the ways in which post-2006 house owners are trapped in the house by the current economic situation, becoming akin to its long-term resident ghosts. The ghost estates, reanimated and reimagined by the Irish artists and film-makers, are shown to embody the price paid locally for failures in global economic policy. The preoccupation with states of liminality is encapsulated by showing that the borders of the nation state have become a permeable membrane. Through this membrane, the toxic waste of first world technology seeps out alongside the murderous economic imperatives of the neoliberal agenda.
trade in such countries as India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Brazil, the
Philippines or Moldova (Cohen, 1999 ;
Scheper-Hughes, 2000 , 2002 , 2004 ; Moniruzzaman, 2012 ) provides copious evidence that these
practices are alarmingly common. These accounts get further
reinforced through their popular representation in literature and
film, situating organtrafficking ‘within an
Ancuta’s chapter, ‘The return of
the dismembered: representing organtrafficking in Asian
cinemas’, explores the gothic dimensions of the transnational
organ trade as a spatial manifestation of neoliberal capital flow.
Ancuta illustrates how existing economic hierarchies in Asia have become
materially actualised in the trade of human organs – with
countries like Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Taiwan
cases the exorbitant interest charged
on the loan means there is little chance that a girl’s sexual slavery will
ever repay the debt. (Bales 2012: 41).
As Jefferies notes, this practice is not isolated to Thailand: “trafficking
in women and girls into debt bondage is becoming the main method
of supply for national and international sex industries. It is worth $31
billion yearly according to UN estimates” (2009: 152).
The dismal epidemic of farmer suicides and sex trafficking have
also corresponded with a rise in organtrafficking. Medical research
the “Post-Cold War” Era’
(1992); Bureau of International Information Programs, US
Department of State, Washington, DC, ‘Iraqi
Disinformation: Allegations and facts’ (4 February 1991);
and Bureau of International Information Programs, US Department
of State, Washington, DC, ‘The Child OrganTrafficking
Rumour: A Modern ‘Urban Legend’ (December
live—the price of an apartment being around €40,000
when most people have a salary of about €250 /month61—
those who see their children being victims of crime, human
and organtrafficking and drugs, those who are thrown out of
their formerly nationalized houses, or those who find themselves unable to pay for basic healthcare.
Lorin Fortuna, the main leader of the Romanian
Democratic Front, also describes a similar feeling of helplessness. He blames the current state of affairs, though, not on
the naivety of the revolutionaries, but rather on the greed of