Modernism In Dracula

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History and modernity work together to prove that you can’t have one and not the other. History has great influence over modern day; the shadows of the past are very noticeable in the present. Throughout the novel, Dracula, there is symbolism and contrasts that include the intertwining of history and modernity. Dracula and Transylvania represent history old ideologies and ways of life. The rest of the characters, such as Jonathan Harker, Mina and Van Helsing, and the setting of England represent modernity and progress. Dracula’s shadow-like presence and magnetism prove that history never quite disappears. On the other hand, there are character’s such as Jonathan Harker, Mina and Van Helsing who show how time has changed and evolved, and how…show more content…
Instead, he exists as a silhouette in the background throughout. Dracula is more of an aura. He is the reflection that old ways remain in the present, even if they are not always visible. In chapter twenty-five, Van Helsing claims that Dracula has “child-brain”. This is because of Dracula’s predictable limitations. He is smart, but he is not as advanced for modern times. Dracula also represents a figure that cannot be explained scientifically, thus he is a difficult person to kill. His hunters, including Harker and Van Helsing struggle in hunting him down. Their own Protestant beliefs and anti-superstition way of life is not the way to hunt Dracula. Instead, they need to use and participate in superstitious practices just as those in Transylvania do to ward off and kill Dracula and other vampires. Protestants do not believe that symbols and relics can save them from damnation, rather they believe everything is in God’s hands. Yet, throughout the novel, they use various symbols, like the Holy Cross, as protection. This can symbolize that science and rationality may not solve every problem. There are things in the world that are hard to understand. The superstitions, Christian beliefs, and science become interwoven in their hunt for Dracula. They needed all of these to achieve…show more content…
He is a Christian that believes and practices in the sciences, yet he has knowledge about superstition and abstract concepts and practices. He is the only one in the novel who had any prior knowledge to vampires and how to deal with them. He is a healthy balance in knowing when and how use modern knowledge and old knowledge. There is never a point in the novel where he is truly weirded out by it either. Rather, he embraces the situation. He is aware that there are some illnesses and forces that cannot be treated with modern, western medicine. Van Helsing understands that science does not always work. When Lucy (a woman who was under Dracula’s power and who later turned into a vampire) is sick, he and Dr. Seward perform numerous blood transfusions on her, using the blood of different men. Blood transfusions, at the time, were a new medical procedure. It did not work. Modern medicine failed in saving Lucy’s life. The modern way of doing things is not always right or correct. He uses crosses, communion wafers, garlic, and hypnosis to get to Dracula, none of which seem rational. In the case of hypnosis, Van Helsing hypnotizes Mina who is stuck in Dracula’s trance. The closer they get to the castle in Transylvania, the harder it is to find Dracula. The castle interrupts the hypnotism. This is because it is Dracula’s home; he can more effectively control Mina. This can

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