Count Dracula’s wives are the first women to be properly described in the narrative, and they seem to fall straightforwardly enough into Bertens’ “dangerous seductress” category, for Jonathan defines them almost purely on their sexuality. Everything from their “voluptuous lips” to their “honey-sweet breath” seems dedicated to portraying Jonathan’s “burning desire” towards them, and Stoker’s choice of language in Jonathan’s narrative clearly depicts the fervent salaciousness with which Jonathan perceives them. This objectification of Dracula’s wives continues throughout the novel right up until their deaths, where they continue to be described as “exquisitely beautiful”. The deaths themselves seem to be quite systematic and mechanica...
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...ollowing the traditional role of pure, virtuous angel. Stoker does allow for some alternative interpretation to reveal potentially hidden meanings throughout the narrative that imply the contrary, but these aren’t enough to dissuade from the popular opinion that Dracula is an example of sexist literature. However, Stoker’s contemporaries would hardly have been of the same opinion. What modern audiences would see as women being dominated by men and forced into traditional roles, audiences in the 1890s would perceive as the natural hierarchy of society, and the natural position of women. Therefore, even though the women in Dracula do indeed conform with Bertens’ stereotypes and conclusions, Stoker probably saw this as normal, and probably didn’t understand the gravity or seriousness with which these sort of things would be looked upon with in a hundred years time.
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