Stoker's Critique Of The New Woman Movement

1268 Words6 Pages
“We have to free half of the human race, the women, so that they can help to free the other half.”- Emmeline Pankhurst. Pankhurst, a suffragette during the Victorian era in the UK, made the claim that the freedom of all humans is intrinsic to the success of humanity. The protest for freedom for women during the Victorian era was called the New Woman movement. At the core of this movement laid the beliefs that woman should have freedom in both their sexual and career lives. At that time, however, this movement faced heavy opposition, with people claiming that women should simply to stick to the Victorian, traditional ideals of religion and chastity. Bram Stoker, author of the novel Dracula, is one such person. Stoker critiques the New Woman movement through his characterization of women in Dracula. He argues that instead of pursuing their independence, women should remain true to Victorian ideals of purity and piety. Refusal to do so, Stoker claims, will result in the disintegration of familial bonds and malice to society. Stoker’s representation of Mina’s character demonstrates his support of her Victorian woman personality traits, and signifies his disapproval towards the feminist movement. From the start, Stoker portrays Mina as supportive of her husband, Jonathan: “I have been working very hard lately, because…show more content…
Stoker believed that the movement would lead to a spread of chaos and evil, and the disintegration of families. Instead, he thought that woman should stay true to the Victorian ideals of chastity and piety. Despite his wishes, over time, women began to gain more and more freedoms, including the right to vote. In current day society, women are seen equal to men on almost every level. However, instances of systemic oppression and inequality against women still exist today, and the fight for those freedoms must continue going
Open Document