Symbolism Of Horror And Sex In Bram Stoker's Dracula
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Thesis Statement: In 1897, Bram Stoker’s Dracula brought the world the seductive character of Dracula, a vampire who inspired both fear and fantasy at the time. Stoker’s story is one with symbolism of horror and sex throughout, themes used by Stoker to communicate messages of sex, lust, sin and desire at a time you couldn’t openly talk about such things. In my paper I will show how Dracula is a representation of both the pleasures and dangers of sex as seen at the time of the Victorian era. During the Victorian time in England, the discussions of sex or anything of a sexual matter were very underplayed and women were taught from a young age that although marriage and motherhood were things to want, sex was not. As Dr. Robert Long said on…show more content… Going from a pure proper woman that is to be married to dangerous vampire that is hunting children in the night. This is a perfect analogy of how the desires of sex can lead to your downfall with Lucy’s lust for the vampire bite changing her. Robert Humphrey in his article Ideals of the Victorian Woman as Depicted in ‘Dracula’ goes into further detail of it.
“Stoker is showing the ease, ability, and potential in which the ideal Victorian woman can be converted into the evil, unchaste, impure, sexual woman of Victorian society.”(Humphrey. Web). What shows the sexist outlook during the Victorian time is how a violent act with sexual undertones and analogies brings young Lucy back into the light. In the scene from Dracula when Van Helsing has Lucy’s former fiancé drive a stake through her heart to release her from the curse of the Undead.
“He looked like a figure of Thor as his untrembling arm rose and fell, driving deeper and deeper the mercy-bearing stake, whilst the blood from the pierced heart welled and spurted up and around it.” (Dracula.…show more content… Katherine Ramsland in The Science of Vampires has this to say about the sexual scene of Dracula and Mina.
“All that sucking suggests an infantile state, and the repressed male sexual imagination of Victorian times.” (Ramsland, Katherine p.223)
To add to this Stephen King said this about the scene.
“The Count clutching Mina, his face slathered with her blood. In an obscene parody of the marriage sacrament, he opens a vein in his own chest with one dirty fingernail and forces her to drink.” (King, p73)
After Mina has been seduced by Dracula, the heroes of the book put into motion their plans to stops him. The character Van Helsing tries to bless Mina in one point of the book with a Holy Communion wafer, but when it is placed on her forehead, it burns her. The scare stays there for the rest of the story, showing how Mina has fallen from grace because of her unholy sexual act with Dracula. Stoker was showing that Mina had become unclean from her dark desires and was now shunned by God even though the men in her life were still trying to protect her.
Even the heroic Van Helsing is tempted by the lure of the sexual vampire in the novel when he confronts the brides near the end of the