Gothic literature is dominated by gothic horror, for instance dark and mysterious objects or events. It is a type of literature that combines fiction, horror, and romanticism. As Bram Stoker wrote his famous novel, Dracula he makes sure to include many different characteristics of gothic literature. Three important motifs that are stated in Dracula which also fit into the gothic literature category would be; blood, dreaming or nightmares, and superstition. This particular novel has many gothic motifs, but these are three that I believe really stand out.
Vampires have been around for centuries, they represent the fear of many things such as sexuality, race, gender, etc. and above all, they stand for the fear of diseases. Vampires have once been the symbol of horror due to their terrific depictions and were described as a threat to the humanity. Throughout time, the image of vampire has changed dramatically from a monstrous, inhumanely creature that doesn’t belong to human society to such an attractive and adaptive figure that expresses more of the human side than the evil. They developed human feelings, senses, and live within our society. Modern vampire movies are often more romantic and “sympathetic” comparing to the past. Vampires have abandoned their horror and evolved to a more
Bram Stoker's Dracula is highly acclaimed and has received many different interpretations which deal with complex symbolisms and metaphors. These interpretations often require a great deal of knowledge in psychology, political science, anthropology, and other non-literary disciplines. These interpretations may be valid, as they are related to the disciplines on which their arguments are based, but the true power of the novel is due to a very simple theme that lies beneath the other, more convoluted interpretations. This theme is the universal concept of identity: us versus them. This criticism sets aside outside disciplines and focuses on the literary motif of identity. John
Unremarkable though it may seem, to affirm the obvious truism that Bram Stoker’s Dracula originates from a century that historians often describe as the most significant in terms of revolutionary ideology, whilst wishing to avoid the clichéd view held, it is undeniable that the more one delves into the depths of this novel the greater wealth of meaning demonstrates significant correlation with Marxist ideology. The 19th Century saw the emergence of revolutionary socialist Karl Marx, who himself used the vampire metaphor to describe the capitalist system as ‘dead labour which, vampire like, lives only by sucking living labour’. Through Stoker’s opulent use of narrative structure, use of setting and imagery, this novel presents a multiple
The play-script book “Dracula”, adapted by David Calcutt, is a captivating reword of the iconic epistolary horror novel of a same name which was written by Bram Stoker, The author outlines the power struggle between good and evil in the text through messages and symbols. The author focuses on Dracula and a group of friend’s actions and emotions in which he uses narrative conventions to convey key messages in the book. The messages I found that were prominent were “evilness is an infection”, “greed is consuming” and “good always prevail”.
“Despite the claimed reverence for puritan ideals, the Victorian era brought numerous challenges to Christianity, including the growing trends of materialism, rationalism, communism, and "higher criticism" of the Bible.” (WEB). There was a lot of controversy going on at that time so people were beginning to doubt their religion and the church, these people who were against God were seen as immoral just as Dracula seen as. Just like Mina and Lucy were infected by sinful blood, the people in that time were also brainwashed by scientists to believe that religion was not true. However Bram Stoker reinforced his universal truth to show that in this context, religion was the good and that scientists were the bad of that time. “A great number of people were habitual church-goers, at least once and probably twice, every Sunday. The Bible was frequently and widely read by people of every class; so too were religious stories and allegories.” (WEB). Although some people went astray of their religion, a large part of the population was still true to their roots and followed religious practices. The church’s main goal was to increase its followers, usually the ones off track were brought back only when the doubt was destroyed; Mina’s process of conversion was stopped the same when Dracula was destroyed. Being religious meant the god would keep you in health and if you were evil then you would have a terrible life. Stoker described
Because the Victorian Era was an age so heavily influenced by religion, it is hardly surprising, that Bram Stoker’s Dracula contains many religious references. The Victorian Era was a time period from 1837 to 1901, during which Queen Victoria reigned in the United Kingdom. During this time, women were expected to be quiet, proper, and pure. All people were expected to attend church, and sexuality was incredibly censored. Religion played an influencing role in Victorian art including visual and literary. Likewise, the fear of being sinful, or not following the Bible was still a fear from the under educated members of society. The prominent branches of Christianity in this era, Protestants and Catholics, dominated the popular culture of western societies. Given the religious context of the Victorian Era, Vampires in Bram Stoker’s Dracula represent sin and have inherently sinful behavior, whereas the humans represents goodness and religion, no matter which kind of religion.
A key element of the fantasy / horror / gothic genres is to fascinate and intrigue readers through stories that pose the “what if” questions, thereby teaching us something new about the society we live in. Sometimes these stories are helpful in explaining difficult concepts of good and evil, science and religion. In Bram Stoker’s Dracula and Richard Matheson’s I Am Legend, the mythical horror creatures, the vampires, have many differences in their mythical abilities, functionality and origin; however, they both serve to underline themes that remind the reader of what makes us human and what defines us as ultimately good or evil. Stoker’s Count Dracula is the product of a religious strike against the antagonist whereas the vampires in I Am
“Vampire Religion” is an article written about Bram Stoker’s “Dracula.” The article is one that was found very useful in reading and understanding the story. Christopher Herbert, the author, argues of the importance that religion and events of the world played on the writing of “Dracula.” There are two parts to the article, one is “Religion/Superstition” and the second part is “The Vampire in the Church.” Both parts are vital to the article.
As we all know Dracula not only has to do with the horror, blood and vampires, but religion, christianity and the Victorian society that play a huge role in the story. These topics all have a reasonable amount of influence on how Dracula was written, and how the various themes in Dracula were developed. The input of religion is seen from the start all the way to the ending no doubt about it. In addition, there are also various examples of how the Victorian society also mixed in with religion, like the ideas of people back then and what they thought was wrong and right due to society’s beliefs . The exploration of thoughts and ideas by all the characters regarding what is wrong and right due to society and religion is also easily seen throughout the story. In the novel Dracula, written by Bram Stoker, the Victorian society influenced overall in the way it was written, and how their beliefs at this time of Christianity are being explored to these new ideas.
Throughout the Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula, one is presented with the presence of many Christian ideals and symbols throughout the text. Count Dracula’s appearance and actions seem to display the perversion of various Christian ideals and symbols and Dr. Van Helsing uses various Christian symbols to defeat Count Dracula. Given that Van Helsing and his posse are able to use the Christian imagery to drive Dracula back to Castle Dracula and eventually defeat him, Stoker might be suggesting that the power of the Christianity and the Christian God will always prevail in a match against evil and the devil.
Dracula is a novel composed of letters, diary entries, and journal entries. There are also occasionally newspaper clippings in this novel as well. The novel reads as a vampire story in Transylvania. Though Dracula can be read that way, the novel has a “strong religious thrust of this novel has correspondingly been ignored, not to say suppressed…” (Herbert 100). While Dracula often reads as a horror novel and has been interpreted by some readers as anti-religious, it nevertheless contains religious symbols, and Christian themes. This paper argues that Dracula can be read as a salvation narrative.
Bram Stoker’s use of characterization and imagery to convey one of his many themes in the book Dracula. In Bram Stoker’s Dracula, the author uses characterization and imagery to convey the theme, Follow your instincts.
Bram Stoker’s Dracula magnificently portrays Anti-Christian values and beliefs through one of its central characters, Dracula. Dracula himself, a demonic figure, both in appearance and in behavior, could be considered the Anti-Christ. This idea of Dracula as a gothic Anti-Christ is a major element in the novel. Stoker displays numerous Anti-Christian values, superstitious beliefs, and compares and contrasts the powers of God with those of Dracula.
Bram Stoker's Dracula is a true Gothic novel that belongs on any gothic literature course. Focusing in on the recurring themes, characters and settings used throughout the novel one sees how Dracula has set the standard for Gothic literature today.