Thirsty for a Fresh Take on All Things True Blood?

WELCOME! Thirsty for a fresh take on all things True Blood? Pull up a virtual barstool at the Pierced Pomegranate Tavern where sisters Rachel and Rebecca are serving up juicy feminist analysis with a twist and opening a vein of thoughtful sociocultural dialogue on HBO's hit series.

Like the epic literary salons of eras past - theaters for conversation and debate which were, incidentally, started and run by women; where the spirited debate about the issues of the day ran as copiously as the actual spirits did - but updated for the digital age, the Pierced Pomegranate Tavern is a fun forum for exploring questions ripe for discourse about the human condition & today's most crucial social issues through the medium of True Blood.

Your salonnières are not peddling liquor per se, but they are offering up new and alternative ideas informed by such diverse influences as pop culture, art, music, cultural history, Goddess studies, transformative theory, literature and poetry, and archaeomythology, filtered through the sieve of their own lived experiences as feminist women of a particular age, background, and culture.

This is a space where you - patrons and passersby alike - can view and engage with these perspectives through the lens of True Blood and contribute your own thoughts. So, no matter if you're a Truebie or a more casual viewer of True Blood, or your drink of choice is a pomegranate martini - one of Rachel's favorite cocktails to drink and Rebecca's to mix - an herbal tea, a frothy double mocha latte, or a can of Fresca (wink, wink) you're invited to join the conversation on the show's complexities in a way that can spark transformation.

Hopefully you'll find something to sink your teeth...err...straw, into! PLEASE ENJOY RESPONSIBLY ;-)


The Pierced Pomegranate Tavern is dedicated to exploring social issues and more through the lens of True Blood. As such, you may encounter:

related to the often provocative and adult themes presented by the show

If you choose to enter and participate in this virtual salon, please be prepared to do so in a thoughtful, respectful, and mature fashion with the above in mind. Click here to check out our comment policy. Thanks!


No copyright infringement is intended, all rights to True Blood belong to HBO, credit is ascribed to sites where images appearing here were originally found.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

True Blood Studies Deep in the Heart of Texas

I can hardly believe a little more than a month has already gone by since the Pierced Pomegranate Tavern set up shop in the Lone Star State, and there's only one thing I miss about Texas more than the amazing food, gorgeous weather and uniquely Tex-Mex culture...

Nope, sorry - it's not you, Stan.
the trigger-happy Texan vampire of Season 2
It's the opportunity to mix and mingle with pop culture scholars investigating all things True Blood!

We already knew the show loomed large in the cultural zeitgeist; the amount of air time dedicated to True Blood at the SW/TX PCA-ACA & National PCA-ACA joint conference held in San Antonio last month proves that it's also captured the imagination of the academy.

The Science Fiction & Fantasy: True Blood subject area alone boasted four separate panels in addition to the one I chaired on feminism & femininity!

But first things first...

This is a tavern, right? So... won't object to me sharing some pics of me enjoying that most San Antonian of adult beverages - the margarita!

 I actually hate margaritas, I hate anything with tequila, really...
 ...except for the classic frozen margarita
 and the prickly pear margarita...
OK, OK, I guess I don't actually hate margaritas - usually I do, I promise. But I guess they are just so expertly made on the Riverwalk in downtown San Antonio, and the balmy weather just lends itself so superbly to the sipping of these icy concoctions that, let's just say, I've gained a newfound appreciation for them.

Along with some excellent local microbrews...
pictured are the 1st three brews listed below

...imbibed at the oldest saloon in Texas where, legend has it, Teddy Roosevelt recruited his rough riders and Pancho Villa fomented revolution...

Oh, wait a second, didn't I make mention of True Blood studies - or something to that effect?

Sorry about that; when the PPT takes us afield I like serve up a taste of the local flavor from where we've been...
mmm...vegetarian fajitas

...sometimes quite literally!

And I will get back to that travelogue element of my trip, but for now, let's return to the meat-and-potatoes of this post!

As you know, I gave a visual talk entitled, "True Blood Reenacts the Goddess Persephone's Ordeal of Abduction and Rape...or Self-Directed Sexual Initiation? Opening a Vein on Woman-Centered Sexuality".

I had the privilege of chairing the Science Fiction and Fantasy - True Blood: Femininity & Feminism panel and as such was able to share the podium with two other gentlewomen and scholars whose work made for stimulating post-panel discussion:

Genevieve Garcia de Mueller, doctoral student at the University of New Mexico, presented the paper, "Hey Sookie Sookie!": De-fanging the Rhetoric of Gender in True Blood".

Marquita R. Smith, doctoral student at McMaster University, presented the paper, "I Got a Right to be Hostile: Tara Thornton and the Myth of the Angry Black Woman".

My husband and I arrived at Salon F in the San Antonio Rivercenter Hotel where my panel was taking place early; we were there at 1PM, just in time for the Masculinity & Queerness panel (and to scope out the space and the technology available to make sure my presentation came off without a hitch!). 

The Science Fiction and Fantasy: True Blood: Masculinity & Queerness panel included the papers:

"Bon Temps and Beyond: Queering Time and Space in True Blood" (Lenora Perry-Samaniego, University of the Incarnate Word)

"Fluid Nightmare in HBO's True Blood" (Natalie Wilson, Cal State San Marcos *she operates a Twilight blog focused on things other than "Team Edward" or "Team Jacob" which I hope to link here; her paper focused on issues surrounding blood and the "menstrual monster" - a topic I myself have had swirling ideas about, ideas I will be fleshing out here soon!)

"Sex, Drugs, and Golden Do-Rags: Gender Performativity in True Blood" (Jeromy Miller, University of Arkansas)

Since Bobby and I wanted to make the most of our short stay in San Antonio we were unable to attend any other True Blood panels, but I think you'll agree that the breadth and scope of paper topics represented by these other panels: Sex & the South, Politics & Identity, Love, Literature & Xenophobia - not to mention the countless other areas and tracks not expressly True Blood-oriented but addressing the show nonetheless - illustrates the extent to which Alan Ball & Co. have infiltrated the academy.

Bring it on, I say!

There's nothing like a little True Blood studies served up with a side order of some local flavor, so now, back to the travelogue of your salonnière Rachel's first-and-only trip to San Antonio!
the Alamo
Rachel with cacti outside Alamo

view of conference hotel from the San Antonio Riverwalk sightseeing barge

flowering cacti; we bought a clipping of this cactus now have a piece
of the Alamo on Long Island! 

another Alamo flowering cactus

100+ year old Live Oak on Alamo grounds

view from inside the Long Barracks - where the deadliest hand-to-hand combat took place during the siege of the Alamo 175 years ago this year

I hope you've enjoyed these photos and my rundown of  True Blood studies deep in the heart of Texas.

The only way the trip could have been better is if Rebecca had been able to come!

Adios for now, Amigos!

~ Rachel

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