It is not just women in Victorian society who suffered due to complicated sexuality; Johnathan Harker was a victim of the open sexuality displayed by the vampire women. In his journal he writes “The girl went on her knee and bent over me, simply gloating. There was a deliberate voluptuousness which was both thrilling and repulsive, and as she arched her neck, she actually licked her lips like an animal.” When he says “Bent over me” it makes the girl seem of a higher status than him. In these times, women were always thought to be inferior to men, which transgresses the boundaries of Victorian societal norms. The fact that Johnathan must close his eyes demonstrates his inability, and evident struggle, to cope with open sexuality as it wasn 't …show more content…
Count Dracula is cunning, charming and above all a demon; he is the definition of the succubus. As Johnathan J Samson says, “Vampires are not meant to exist as heroes. Go back a few hundred years and men believed truly that the vampire was a real immortal, cursed to quench his undying thirst with a living mortal’s blood.” This could mean that people in this era were afraid of Dracula as Victorians didn’t like the idea that there could be anything that posed a threat to humans. “With his left hand he held both Mrs. Harker 's hands, keeping them away with her arms at full tension; his right hand gripped her by the back of the neck, forcing her face down on his bosom. “The use of the word "forcing" makes the reader consider it to be rape and the posture of both Mina and Dracula portray the power he has over women. This is also demonstrated when he restrains her using only his left hand. The novel reflects to the amount of power men had over women in the Victorian period, for example a woman couldn’t own property and couldn’t work in this era. Which forced the woman to stay with the man however he behaved. Similarly in ‘The Bloody Chamber’ the Marquis is described as “big, strong and catlike, but also gentle and romantic.” This could this could refer to the concept of 'Toxic Masculinity ', which is the idea that men can 't show emotion in fear of being mocked and emasculated by society. The female in ‘The Bloody Chamber’ is unable to leave due to the Marquis’ home being remote and her financial dependency on him ‘The Bloody Chamber’ is based on the legend of Bluebeard and Carter keeps this plot, having the Marquis kill his wives and store their corpses in a secret chamber. Like Bluebeard, the Marquis tempts each new wife to explore the forbidden chamber and then kills her once she has discovered his secret. This is indicative of Sadism, a term derived from the Marquis de Sade to describe gaining pleasure in giving pain. The Marquis is considered a sadist because of
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Bram Stoker’s Dracula is a Gothic tale that in a lure of decadence warns against the pull of the past. Victorian ideals are set to cherish the idyllic home, but when the national dwelling is compromised, Dracula’s invasion mixes the foreign with the familiar. England, a paragon of Western order and a colonizer, fears any disease that weakens the growing Empire. In Bram Stoker’s Dracula, the Count embodies the Victorian fear of reverse colonization through his deliberate crossing of cultural and physical boundaries as a way to undermine British imperialism.
In the novel Dracula, Bram Stoker highlights the theme of sexuality that challenge ideas of sex to both the female and male characters. The author objectifies the female characters in the novel to be over sexualized and portrays sex to empower women. Stoker may present the theme of female sexuality; however, he demonstrates gender inequality triumphs at the end leaving women in the shadows again. Women in the eighteenth century hardly had any type of power outside of overseeing the household and they probably contained much less power expressing any type of sexual emotions. Stoker’s novel gives readers a different perspective of the female sexuality as if almost empowering women and stating that they too can be sexual creatures like men.
The essay I chose to compare Dracula with was “Kiss Me With Those Red Lips: Gender and Inversion in Bram Stoker’s Dracula” by Christopher Craft. The essay explains the sexuality in Dracula, desire, gender, and even homosexuality. Craft mentions his essay gives an account of Stoker’s “vampire metaphor” (Craft 108). He highlights certain and very valid points in the story of Dracula that breaks the Victorian gender role, writing, “a pivotal anxiety of late Victorian culture.” (Craft 108).
The horror genre of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, combined with mild eroticism is able to draw in readers due to the fact that Stoker is able to intricately weave suspenseful sexual scenes/scenes of desire throughout the novel—making it clear that
During the Victorian period in which Dracula was written, morals and ethics were often strictly enforced. Some of the morals that were upheld had to do with personal duty, hard work, honesty, as well as sexual proprietary. It was very important during this period that one was proper in their sexual behaviors and conventional in whom they had sexual relations with. However, during this period, many authors sought to challenge the ‘norm’ with ideas of reform and change and Bram Stoker was no exception to this. In his novel, Dracula, Stoker provides a critique of this rigidity in his portrayal of Dracula and Dracula’s relationship with Jonathan Harker.
The beloved novel “Dracula” by Bram Stoker is an influential piece of gothic literature. Horror stories typically portray the Victorian woman to be a helpless victim and to be sexually objectified, but the story “Dracula” continuously uses the character Mina Murray Harker to challenges these gender norms. Mina is one of the several protagonists in the story, and it is important to note that she is the only female in the protagonist group. She is engaged to a man named Jonathan Harker who is also in that group. Initially, she embodies the ideal Victorian woman who is gentle, maternalistic, and loyal to her husband, but as the story progresses, her character develops to show independence and take on a more active role in defeating the antagonist, Count Dracula.
The topic I have chosen for my essay is how Dracula is meant to remind society of the importance of religion, specifically Christianity, in Stoker’s time. I intend to do this through analyzing symbols in Dracula, drawing connections between these symbols and Christianity, and analyzing the implications Stoker attempts to make. I chose this topic because vampires and their sacrilegious implications, such as burning when touching a cross, have always been of interest to me, hence why I chose to study Dracula in the first place. My thesis is: Stoker uses Count Dracula as symbol to represent what society may become if they abandon religious beliefs.
The presentation of Good vs. Evil is one of the main themes in the novel, Dracula. The portrayal of good and evil is seen in each character throughout the book. The characters considered “evil” in the novel are Dracula and his vampire brides. Dracula converts humans into vampires and has immense power over certain individuals. Everything he does demonstrates that there is no good in him at all.
Feminist Reading: Dracula between Beauvoir’s and Roth’s Ideas In her article, “Suddenly Sexual Women in Bram Stoker’s Dracula” Phyllis Roth argues that Dracula is a misogynistic novel which is obvious in the system of power in which men are dominant and active figures whereas women are just followers and obedient to their system. She draws on Simon de Beauvoir’s idea that “ambivalence as an intrinsic quality of Eternal Feminine”, in order to show that women are victims to men powers. In her chapter, “Myth and Reality”, Beauvoir discusses the way that anybody in the society, specially men, doesn’t do their job in taking a step towards the oppressed women, but to act just like what the system of myth impose them to act.
At first glance, the novel Dracula by Bram Stoker appears to be a typical gothic horror novel set in the late 1890s that gives readers an exciting look into the fight between good and evil. Upon closer inspection, it becomes apparent that Dracula is a statement piece about gender roles and expectations for men and women during the Victorian age. Looking at the personalities, actions, and character development of each of the characters in Dracula bring to light startling revelations about Victorian society and how Stoker viewed the roles of men and women during this time period. To really understand Dracula, it is important to note that this novel was written during a time “of political and social upheaval, with anxieties not just about the
The major theme in the novel Dracula by Bram Stoker is the threat of female sexual expression. During this time period, female sexual behavior was frowned upon. Women were said to have to be either a virgin or a wife and mother. Social standards were very strict during this time, making it unheard of for women to show sexual expressions. In is era, the main concern was the role women had in society.
Dracula is about vampires in general, the myth, the mystery and the horror. Even though Dracula wasn’t the first vampire story, it was the first really popular one. Throughout the novel, the author, Bram Stoker, portrays many different aspects of women's roles in the 19th century. With the use of imagery and symbolism, the theme of sexuality and gender roles has an enormous presence in the novel. Social gender roles of women and men during the Victorian Era were very strict and looked upon differently than any other time period.
“Fear can challenge our sense of humanity and understanding of the world” This is a broad statement and in a book with over 300 pages, I will be focusing on certain parts in each of the books. Proving that fear can and really does challenge our sense of humanity and understanding in the world, from the start of the book where they tried to make up a rational solution to make this all seem like it wasn’t real, to actively fight against the evil they had so vehemently protested against existing. Bram stokers 19th-century fictitious Gothic novel 'Dracula ' is incredibly complex with many different characters from the meek and underestimated Mina, to the courageous and respected Van Helsing.
Gothic horror novel Dracula, the title character makes only several relatively short appearances, some of which are while in disguise. Throughout the novel, Stoker keeps Count Dracula in the shadows, both literally and figuratively. This essay will describe these appearances and analyze Stoker’s use of them to determine what effect they might have on the impression of the character and the novel overall. It will be claimed that by keeping his title character hidden for much of the novel, Stoker’s Dracula is made much more frightening to the reader. Human beings tend to fear the unknown, and by leaving Dracula to the imagination,
This unsettling evokes some of the key features of the Gothic, such as the use of phantasmagoria, transgression, and excesses, all of which disturbed the reader by surrounding them with dark reflections of a reality portrayed through fiction. Pacts with the devil to obtain one’s desires, monks and aristocrats who revel in luxury — even if this means they must stain their hands with blood —, vampires and mad scientists: all corrupt one’s morals, all corrupt the false appearance of serenity. Likewise, the female vampires who torment Jonathan Harker disturb the harmony of the domestic sphere and unsettle the delicate balance between the private and the public domain. These vampiric women are marked by heightened sensuality and tacked to other fatal women that permeate art and European literature at the end of the nineteenth century. In this novel, fear and desire are often confused, a clue modern anxieties surrounding desire toward sensuous but degrading bodies.