The Literary fiction genre of Gothic, including Crime and Horror, usually features a figure of Otherness as either the protagonists of antagonists of the story. The noun Otherness is used in this context to describe a being that is different from the norm. This could be a creature that is not human at all or an individual as representation of a minority group in the human society, in either race, class, sexuality or gender. These figure often have the function of discussing issues, such as homosexuality or gender inequality. “Gothic fiction of the nineteenth century specifically used the body of the monster to produce race, class, gender and sexuality within narratives about the relation between subjectivities and certain bodies.” …show more content…
The most famous vampire however, is Bram Stoker’s “Dracula”, antagonist of the eponymous novel that was first published in the year 1897. Since its popularity in Victorian Gothic literature, the versatile creature has never lost its position as one of the most used monsters in fiction, not only restricted to the genre of Horror. The vampire is able to adapt to every generation without any difficulties and thereby avoids being exposed in its Otherness. In Victorian times as well as contemporary times, the vampire is used to raise attention to social anxieties and fears about differences in mankind. In the early nineteenth century, one of the biggest threats to humanity were contagious illnesses, such as tuberculosis and syphilis. After the fast increasing of cities during the Industrialisation, illnesses spread more quickly and every member of society could be infected. Being turned into a vampire was often used as an image of the outbreak of a lethal illness. One the most apparent similarities between a lethal disease and the transformation to a vampire is the infectiousness through blood or other bodily fluids. The way Dracula’s victims are infected is through exchange of blood, which is how sexual transmitted diseases, like syphilis or nowadays the similarly as lethal AIDS, are carried. Bruce Hale offers a description of the development of cholera in Victorian times: “thirst and dehydration; sever pain in the limbs, stomach, and abdominal muscles; a change skin hue to a
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Are there still connections between Bram Stokers famous novel Dracula and modern day society? In Dracula, Stoker expands on many themes that indeed exist today. Not only does he touch on the most obvious theme, sex. He expands on gender division and good versus evil. Some say since times have changed the themes I introduced have changed as well, leaving connections between then and now irrelevant. However, I feel that although times have changed they still have roots from the time of the novel to now. In this essay I will expand on the themes of this novel while connecting them to modern day society, the critical texts I have chosen and will mention later on in the essay are a good representation of the commonalities between the chill, dark Victorian days in which the era that Dracula was written in and modern day.
Poe and Byron are masterful at using vivid, descriptive language to develop the elements of Gothic literature and instill a sense of fear in the reader.
The spookiest experience Kaylee ever had was the time she almost died at surf camp. She was trying to go where the water wasn't breaking into waves and as soon as she got just about there, a 3 foot wave came and was just about to crash and she was in the range to get hit so when it finally crashed it took her under the water and flipped her over about three times to the point where she couldn't breathe and she almost died. This scenario is related to the traits of gothic literature and magic realism because they both show life threatening situations. It is also different however, because Magical Realism is more relatable to a person with a normal life that has been interrupted with strange events, while in Gothic Literature one cannot
Stoker’s novel Dracula, presents the fear of female promiscuity, for which vampirism is a metaphor. Such fear can be related to the time in which Dracula was written, where strict Victorian gender norms and sexual mores stipulated
Secondly, whatever the difference monsters have from a human, whether it be animal characteristics, made-up attributes, or a combination of human limbs and other traits, any discrepancy points out their difference from humanity. The monsters with human attributes backhandedly comment on human behaviors, such as Manticore, Medusa and Minotaur. Blake and Cooper note that Medusa is in a group of “over-sexual women… were combined with snakes in order to emphasize the supposed sinful nature of women and temptations of their bodies” (Blake and Cooper 4). In recent monster stories, humanoid monsters have become increasingly normal. Thirdly, despite their distortions, monsters reflect who we are as humankind. Their many differences in meaning and image reflect humanity’s diversity. “Gothic” fiction is a literary tradition that started a recent wave of monsters that consisted of novels from Dracula to The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. People began to write tales that tamed the supernatural
After decades of cheesy horror movies, the image of vampires has been misconstrued as sparkly, angsty teenage boys or handsome men that lure in girls for the fresh blood of a virgin. Many of these stereotypical vampires are influenced by the story of Dracula, held in the Victorian era. Yet, many of the stories published about vampires diverge from the message that Bram Stoker is trying to make. During the Victorian period, sexuality is repressed by society, as sexual behaviors from women are viewed as unacceptable. In the Gothic horror novel Dracula, Bram Stoker uses the traumatic experience of Jonathan Harker at Count Dracula’s castle and the invasion of vampires in Great Britain to create a social commentary on the sexual repression occurring in this era and its detrimental effect on the men.
To begin with, the message “evilness is an infection” is evident which is conveyed through the use of narrative conventions. A narrative convention used is the plot which is the events that make up the story. The convention is used as the plot of “Dracula” is summarized as a story of a group of friends attempt to destroy the evil Dracula who threatens the living and the good. In this way it is comparable to scientists striving to end a plague carrier. In this case, the vampires (Dracula and Lucy) are the plague carrier in addition to feeding upon humans and infecting his victims with “vampirism”. The group of friends are associated with scientists task with the control, prevention of the plague and the extermination of the infected which in their case, the vampires. This is proven in Act 2, Scene 7 as the group of friends track down now vampire Lucy and executed her to prevent further deaths. A plausible counterpart of “vampirism” is
The burning began at the earliest hour. His majesty, king of Otranto watched unsatisfied as the roaring flames licked over what was once the purest of white roses. All composure lost at but a petal unlit, he left no rose in his entire kingdom with even the dignity of coal before dismantling to ash, until alas, they were sealed to their fiery fate. The winds were still now, not even the tweak of a tree for encouragement nor the bravery of a whisper of the surrounding men as they watched in due apprehension to break the stillness. All that remained were the plumes of billowing exhaust tracing upwards into the air, and King Warner, as he watched from his throne until the smog faded into the midst. By dawn the white roses, together with any
Gothic literature has been criticized as being a dreary, dark, and death-involving subset of Romanticism (a literary movement accentuating human individuality, imagination, and subjectivity). In addition, gothic lit incorporates several themes- not all about deathly acts - but includes some emotional and surprising themes such as dreams, nightmares, or hallucinations, and grotesque or bizarre occurrences. Two short stories, both written by Edgar Allan Poe, entitled “The Raven,” and “The Black Cat,” as well as the novel The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern, all encompass these gothic elements, found throughout each story.
Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” is a story about a Vampire named Count Dracula and his journey to satisfy his lust for blood. The story is told through a series of individuals’ journal entries and a letters sent back and forth between characters. Bram Stoker shows the roll in which a certain gender plays in the Victorian era through the works of Dracula. This discussion not only consists of the roll a certain gender takes, but will be discussing how a certain gender fits into the culture of that time period as well as how males and females interact among each other. The Victorian era was extremely conservative when it came to the female, however there are signs of the changing into the New Woman inside of Dracula. Essentially the woman was to be assistance to a man and stay pure inside of their ways.
The Gothic genre often reproduces a conservative paranoid structure when it comes to homophobia and other moral panics over sex (Hanson, Pg. 176). Eve Sedgwick depicts this in her work, ‘Between Men: English Literature and Male Homosexual Desire’ as she discusses how these ideas (paranoia) are represented within the Gothic, in what she describes as the ‘homosocial’ in reference to male bonds (Sedgwick, Pg. 86). She also discusses how bonds between men exist as the backbone of social form and forms (Sedgwick, Pg. 86). Thus, a consequence of said structure is the ability to define, control, and manipulate male bonds, which in turn becomes an inexplicably powerful instrument of social control (Sedgwick, Pg. 86). Thus, homosexuality is represented as the ‘unspeakable’ within the Gothic, as it has been defined, controlled, and manipulated to be such though social control. Therefore, this paper will discuss how ‘homosocial’ bonds between men, are used as a tool in social control and used as a way to produce paranoia and moral panic, thus in reference to the Gothic, these forms epitomize homosexuality as the ‘unspeakable,’ especially through homosexual representations within the contexts of ghosts and haunted houses.
Although in modern times people are exposed to sexuality from a young age through advertisements, media, and pop culture, during the Victorian era in England, the only acceptable exploration of repressed sexual desire was through a book that upholds the Christian belief of sexuality’s corruptive effects on society. In Bram Stoker’s Dracula, a gothic, horror novel, Dracula, a vampire from Transylvania, preys on Mina Harker, a devoted Christian and intelligent woman, and Lucy Westenra, an innocent, young woman pursued by three suitors, by luring them and sucking their blood; the women and their suitors form a gang of vampire fighters who track and eventually kill Dracula defeating his devilry with the forces of
Stephen King's The Boogeyman was my favorite piece of gothic literature that we read. I was trying to figure the story out all the way until the end and had to re-read some of it to fully understand. It was suspenseful, scary, but also had a good story to listen to. The Boogeyman was full of gloomy settings, monsters, characters in distress, and intense emotions. These 4 things are just a couple elements that make up gothic literature.
The legend of the vampire has emerged countless times within human imagination over the past few centuries. The first available representation of the mythical creature in prose fiction can be found in John Polidori’s “The Vampyre” (1810). It was not until eight decades later that Bram Stoker popularized the existence of this figure with the publication of “Dracula” in 1897. The folklore of the vampire has come a long way since and can be found in today’s popular media more frequently than ever before. However, with due course of time, the representation of the creature has taken alternate routes and today’s vampires are noticeable different – socially and physically – from their predecessors. One effective path to trace this
The Vampire in Dracula threatens the very existence of Victorian England. Stoker constructs the vampire as an embodiment of threat by surpassing his Gothic novelist predecessors to bring the threat of the Gothic home to Victorian England (Arata 119). This in turn crosses the boundary between what is foreign and what is national; and dually East and West. Dracula is open to many