Professor Elizabeth Miller has passed away. If her name is not immediately recognizable to you, that’s okay. That just means you aren’t seriously into scholarly study of Bram Stoker and his novel DRACULA. If you are a student, however, then Ms. Miller needs no introduction. She was, and this is no hyperbole, one of the most preeminent experts on the subject in the entire world.
From her obituary: “Elizabeth Russell, later Elizabeth Miller, attended Memorial University, where she fulfilled the requirements for a BA, a BA(Ed), an MA and a PhD. Her PhD dissertation, completed in 1987, was a critical biography of the Canadian writer Norman Duncan…She had been a member of the Department of English Language and Literature at Memorial for some years before attaining her PhD, teaching in the areas of Newfoundland writing and writers of the Romantic era. It was through such Romantic era writers as Lord Byron, Percy Shelley, and John Polidori, who wrote the first novel to contain the character who became known as Dracula, that she became interested in Count Dracula herself. Throughout the decades that followed, she became a recognized expert on Bram Stoker, and Dracula, the character he made larger than life in so many ways. Betty Miller believed that Stoker was a serious writer and Dracula was a character worthy of study. Between 1997 and 2012 she wrote or edited and published seven books on Dracula, the latter, entitled The Lost Journal of Bram Stoker, on which her co-editor was Dacre Stoker, grand-nephew of Bram Stoker. She was also the impetus behind 20-plus articles on aspects of Stoker and Dracula; she delivered lectures at universities, learned studies, conferences, ballet productions and private functions, as well as becoming involved in several television documentaries and scores of newspaper and magazine articles on the two.”
Godspeed, Dr. Miller. Tell Mr. Stoker hello from me.