SUBJECT AREA Self improvement
CREATED ON 11th April 2018

The Treatment of Women in Bram Stoker's Dracula Essay

The Treatment of Women in Bram Stoker's Dracula In reading Bram Stoker's Dracula, I find the remedy of the two principal female characters - Lucy Westenra and Mina Harker - particularly intriguing. These two girls are two reverse archetypes created by a society of threatened men hoping to shield themselves. Lucy is your Medusa archetype. She's physically appealing, and wins the heart of every man who comes near her (e.g. Arthur, Quincey, Jack, and Van Helsing). Her main quality is sensual beauty, however, her sexual appetite is repressed and not allowed to communicate. And yet both the side and the sensual side are in her, and when the long repressed sexuality finds a port, it explodes and takes over fully. In other words, she is transformed into the completely voluptuous female vampire precisely because her sexual side of personality was completely buried by her Victorian education. Her repressed self demands this expression that when Dracula came along, she went outside to greet him, and then invited him to the house (by opening her window to the bat). He's her vent for sexual abuse. When Lucy becomes a celebrity herself, John Seward describes her as follows: She seemed like a nightmare of Lucy as she lay there; the pointed teeth, the bloodstained, voluptuous mouth - which made one shudder to see - the whole carnal and unspiritual appearance, seeming like a devilish mockery of Lucy's sweet purity (252; ch.16). And for this voluptuous Lucy that he does not have any pity: "the remnant of my love passed into hate and loathing; had she subsequently to be killed, I could have done it with savage delight" (249; ch.16). But why this mindset? I think it's the aggressive novelty that the vampire Lucy shows that.

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