Dracula

Carmilla was, bafflingly, left out of the Guardian’s Top 10 Vampires for kids. Dracula is number one. The author apologises for being obvious. Well, geez louise. Frankly, I’d much rather the kids read Carmilla then Dracula.

Because? Because Dracula is a colonialist, sexist, xenophobic, imperialist, racist, misogynist, sadistic, … errmm, Un-Book. Dracula is a nasty piece of invasion literature. Even GradeSaver says so.

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Says requireshate

Likely he never thought “women’s only place is on the pedestal,” yet that’s where his female characters generally end up

in a delightful post about Tolkien; but the same goes for Stoker — bleeding and bitten to pieces, heads cut off and stakes driven through their hearts — yet these women go on smiling saintly and bravely. The battle between good and evil hinges upon their sexual mores, bless their hearts. Dracula’s sexuality seems unhinged — to say the least — but surely the xenophobic and misogynist reaction of the British boys — the sadistic pleasure in the description of Lucy being deeply penetrated by a stake through the heart, for example — is far more frightening.

Aforementioned penetration comes, fittingly, from Lucy’s cornuto fiancé, Arthur Holmwood: Lucy is being punished not so much for being a vampire, but rather for being available to the vampire’s seduction—Dracula, we recall, only has the power to attack willing victims. When Holmwood slays the demonic Lucy, he returns her to the role of a legitimate, monogamous lover, which reinvests his fiancée with her initial Victorian virtue.

Want to read:

  • A Vampire in the Mirror: The Sexuality of Dracula by John Allen Stevenson. MLAA 103, No. 2 (Mar., 1988), pp. 139-149. JSTOR
  • A Feminist Introduction to Romanticism by Elizabeth A. Fay. Wiley-Blackwell, 1991.
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  • Vampyres: Lord Byron to Count Dracula by Christopher Frayling et al. Faber & Faber, 1992. Reviews on Goodreads. Vampire literature is an amazingly varied genre of writing, providing elements of everything from the penny dreadful horrors to powerful doses of myth and eroticism. Because it contains its own mythology and its own …
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  • Bram Stoker’s Dracula (Bloom’s Modern Critical Interpretations) by Harold Bloom. 2003.
  • Dracula Wiki: The Mythic Text(s) of Dracula: Reproducing the Aura. A Reading Guide to Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
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    Chiens écrasés

    • ❤ Nasty Quotes 1 ❤
      “Dracula is far more interesting for its influence upon us than it can be in itself, given Stoker’s inferior gifts as a writer. Rather like Poe’s dreadfully stylized stories, Dracula verges upon myth because it has contaminated our nightmares. Stoker inaugurates our sordid dilemma by suggesting that there are two choices only: become a vampire, or transform yourself into a sublimely violent murderer of vampires.” Harold Bloom ( ❤ )
    • ❤ Nasty Quotes 2 ❤
      “He is a master of the commonplace style in which clichés flow as if they were impelled by the same pressure as genius. I don’t say this lightly. There is a semi-heroic, Everyman quality about his intense command of the mediocre … When such a man, just once, is thoroughly afraid, the charade stops and what you get is Dracula.” Ludovic Flow
    • Christopher Frayling. Dracula: The man behind the cape
    • Dracula’s Castle returned to its ancestral owners 60 years after being seized by communists
    • ❤ Nasty Quotes 3 ❤ “Bram Stoker must be turning over in his grave”, imdb comment on Coppola’s Dracula, with, quelle nightmare, Keanu Reeves and Wynona Rider. The mind boggles.
    • Dracula bites back! Dacre Stoker, great grand-nephew of Bram, worries about Dracula’s reputation.
    • There was actually one intriguing element in Dracula: the geographical descriptions in the book. Thanks to some friends in the English Language Café I got a better sight on Dracula countryVarna, the Donau Delta, Bulgaria and Rumania, Galați, Vlad the Impaler & the history of the Austro-Hungarian rule and the Turkish occupation. So with the good advice I found on this excellent blog-for-teachers, I started My Own Dracula Map 🙂
    • drakula, drakula

      drakula, du schlimmer,
      komm nicht auf mein zimmer,
      tu mama nicht schrecken,
      nicht uns kinder necken,
      bleib´ bloß schön zu haus´,
      bei der flebebermaus.“

      H.C.Artmann

    • Denn die Todten reiten schnell …

      The sentence „denn die Todten reiten schnell“ (“for the dead travel fast”), famously quoted from the ballad Lenore by Gottfried August Bürger. The name Lenore is also used in The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe(Wikipedia). I tried to read Lenore. I really tried.

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    One thought on “Dracula

    1. Pingback: Reading now :: Dracula :: Watching now « Anja Murez

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