Introduction: from preternatural pastoral to paranormal romance

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It is fair to say that the paranormal romance began with love affairs between tamed, sympathetic vampires and humans. But, since then, all kinds of supernatural species have been found in the arms and beds of humankind, with werewolves a particular favourite. The shapeshifter, especially the werewolf, is particularly suited as an instrument for exploring the boundaries of humanity and animality, culture and nature. The werewolf of this genre is far more tied to animality and the physiological than the present-day vampire, despite the latter’s often compulsive blood-lust. The werewolf, too, is bound to a hierarchical pack society; this group membership necessarily evokes a different perspective on the social than the usually solitary vampire. (6)