“Come on in!” Home, Hospitality and the Construction of Power in The Originals
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This chapter explores the various facets and intricate interrelations of home, family and hospitality in the construction of power in The CW television series The Originals. The notion of home has long been employed as a literal protection mechanism for humans, witches and werewolves against vampires who cannot enter if not invited in. At the same time, vampire dwellings are essentially open to everyone and thus become a stage for power plays and violence. With core attributes being virtues such as generosity and friendliness, the concept of hospitality in The Originals is strongly related to questions of political allegiance, usefulness and power relations. Following Jacques Derrida’s ideas on hospitality, this chapter analyses how The Originals employs the concepts of family and home, both relatively new interests of the twenty-first century vampire, to discuss how their interrelation bestows power upon the monster. This power is mirrored in the vampire’s ability to selectively confer hospitality and to grant outsiders entrance to their home. In The Originals, the concept of home cannot be realised without family, and both are crucial to central character Klaus Mikaelson’s negotiation of hospitality as a tool for acquiring dominance and power.
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