6. Contaminating Sexualities Another group which is often excluded from the action in Dracula are women. Vampiric women, for instance, do not get their own voice but are only talked about by other characters (mostly men). Mina seems to be the only woman with a proper voice in the story. Carol Senf argues in her article "'Dracula': Stoker's Response to the New Woman": "If it were not for Mina Harker, the reader might conclude that Stoker is a repressed Victorian man with an intense hatred of women or at least a pathological aversion to them" (34).
‘Dracula’ is a modern play adapted, by Liz Lochhead, from the classic horror novel written by Bram Stoker. The play is set during the Victorian era and develops the key themes that were prevalent during this era such as sexual hypocrisy. Lochhead’s unusual approach places much more significance on the female characters, in particular, Mina and Lucy and puts much less significance on the more well-known and traditional main characters such as Dracula and Van Helsing. The power dynamics of the Victorian era conditioned men to be strong and women to be weak, innocent and fragile. As women had to be innocent and expressing sexual desires was seen as a form of corruption that made you guilty, women’s rational and natural desires were silenced and
Introduction Literature has proved to be throughout time a powerful tool for creating enduring myths, legendary characters and fictional stories, making thus the truth irrelevant as long as the narrative was gripping. Such aspects, together with the context and period into which a novel was written brought to life stories that have become immortal and are going to last for eternity. This seems to be the case of the 19th century author Bram Stoker, who, upon fact, legend and fiction brought to life his eponymous vampire: Count Dracula, a sinister and monstrous predator who thrived on the blood of living souls. Regarded by many as the defining work of Gothic fiction, Stoker’s fin-de-sìecle novel achieved a pervasive hold on Western imagination, transforming it into one of the most lasting literary myths of all times. Hence, it comes as no surprise that when we say “vampire” we immediately think of Dracula, and such has been the superstition created around this character that nowadays it is impossible to allude to Romania, and particularly to Transylvania, without thinking of it as the home of Dracula.
Using these words, the authors draw the line of distinction between the roles of “the saint” and “the whore” (200). Secondly, independent women in fairy tales were often associated with the concept of evil because they menaced the patriarchal order itself (203). No longer relying on men for emotional or economic support, these women were harder to control (203). However, back in the days when these tales were crafted, “most women had not been by tradition so fortunate as to enjoy the economic independence that would enable them to run their lives as wished” (203). As a result, their roles in society were entirely defined by their relationships with men (207).
Britain feared that the diversity of nations would weaken their imperialistic power since they had a strong national character. According to Arata, the fear of dissolving into vampires is the fear of ‘dissolving into Roumanians’ (cited in Gelder 12). Stoker’s vampirisation symbolises colonisation, or more likely reverse colonisation: “Stoker tackles the issue of colonization and the metaphoric revolt of the “inferior” East visible through Count Dracula’s desire to become a part of the English society.” (Lukić and Matek 6). Dracula returns colonisation to the main colonisers. Harker discovers Dracula’s enthusiasm about England, apart from significant business interests: “The books were of the most varied kind, history, geography, politics, political economy, botany, geology, law, all relating to England and English life and customs and manners.”(Stoker 22).
Nazism achieved prestige among women by understanding and taking control of the portions of life most influenced and influencing on women. Nazism was the cure for the problems of Weimar, the replacement for religion, and the central ruling party in the social realm of the housewife, which gave it just as much influence over German women as it did the men goose stepping to Hitler’s own marching orders. Weimar Germany was government that failed the world. Though the failure of stopping the rise of Nazism is certainly the most well-known failure the failure perceived by the people, especially the women, may well be just as significant. How could a government that gave women suffrage fail them more than one that was not only masculine, but a borderline misogynist?
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. She shows that being immanent is what the society ‘myth’ considers ones as good people, however, the ones, who are transcendental, are the ones who have gone beyond ordinary limitations, so they are considered as evils. She explains that society and individuals are the one who decide how to act according to their needs.
My impression of the novel is a book capable of inducing the feeling of eroticism, sexual energy, danger, and suspense all at the same time. In my view, the genre of the novel can best be described as an erotic thriller. The novel present a strange intermixing of humans and other supernatural beings. Indeed, the writer follows the modern tradition of presenting vampires as a romantic, erotic and elegant species rather than some demonic creature. The character of Sookie Stackhouse is indeed a very intricate one the more I read about her and the more I become familiar with her personality the more she excites me.
The role of female characters in Bram Stoker 's "Dracula" and its movie adaptation by Francis Ford Coppola Gothic novel made its breakthrough with Horace Walpole in the late 18th century, when the term 'gothic ' was used to describe something barbarous or medieval. In the late Victorian era, Bram Stoker wrote "Dracula", a novel written in a form of journal with a monster living in a castle full of mysteries that ought to be revealed within the atmosphere of gloom and terror. After the first publication in 1897, its movie adaptations, which "constitute a simpler attempt to make texts 'relevant ' or easily comprehensible to new audiences and readerships via the process of proximation and updating" (Sanders 19) have begun. The most famous ones are "Nosferatu" by F. W. Murnau in 1922 and "Bram Stoker 's Dracula" by Francis Ford Coppola 70 years later, analyzed more minutely in the essay. In most of the adaptations the emphasis is on the character of the Count
Therefore, we expect the good to triumph over the bad, and the princess to get her prince. The book also incorporates many elements paralleling to the story of Cinderella. However, Pratchett adds interesting twists to the book to demonstrate the notion of fallacy. This serves as the foundation of the primary theme, allowing for other aspects to be layered as the book continues. For instance, witches are generally thought of as wicked and evil, whereas fairies are honest and wholesome.