History of the Vampire

  • The image of the vampire is one that possibly dates back to pre-modern times but only became popularized in the west around the early 1800’s  
  • Many Eastern European countries (Romania for example) had a long mythological tradition about these creatures who belonged to the realm of the undead and relied on the blood of the living to survive  
  • The image of the vampire is one that possibly dates back to pre-modern times but only became popularized in the west around the early 1800’s  
  • Many Eastern European countries (Romania for example) had a long mythological tradition about these creatures who belonged to the realm of the undead and relied on the blood of the living to survive  

Success of Dracula

  • Stoker’s work became one of the most successful literary works on the vampire  
  • First, Stoker’s novel addresses the concerns and anxieties of late Victorian England (sexuality, science, religion, etc.) 
  • Second, we see a lot of imagery which pits the “evil” nature of the vampire against “good/Christian” forces (emphasis on religious symbolism) 
  • Third, recent scholarship has applied different theories of interpretation (particularly that of Freudian psychoanalysis which looks at sexuality, repression, danger, disgust, etc.) 
  • Stoker’s work became one of the most successful literary works on the vampire  
  • First, Stoker’s novel addresses the concerns and anxieties of late Victorian England (sexuality, science, religion, etc.) 
  • Second, we see a lot of imagery which pits the “evil” nature of the vampire against “good/Christian” forces (emphasis on religious symbolism) 
  • Third, recent scholarship has applied different theories of interpretation (particularly that of Freudian psychoanalysis which looks at sexuality, repression, danger, disgust, etc.) 

Format

Don't use plagiarized sources. Get Your Custom Essay on
History of the Vampire
Just from $13/Page
Order Essay
  • Dracula doesn’t follow a normative pattern of narration as we find in some novels 
  • There are letters, journal entries, transcriptions, newspaper articles, and a ship log  
  • Each section contributes something important to the narrative and setting the scene 
  • Dracula doesn’t follow a normative pattern of narration as we find in some novels 
  • There are letters, journal entries, transcriptions, newspaper articles, and a ship log  
  • Each section contributes something important to the narrative and setting the scene 

Major Themes

  • The relationship between sexuality, death, and religious morality is something that is seen throughout the novel 
  • As we will see when we read through Mary Douglas’ work Purity and Danger, the significance of a social taboo is very important 
  • Lastly, the connection between science and religion is explored in various ways 
  • The relationship between sexuality, death, and religious morality is something that is seen throughout the novel 
  • As we will see when we read through Mary Douglas’ work Purity and Danger, the significance of a social taboo is very important 
  • Lastly, the connection between science and religion is explored in various ways 

Chapter 1

  • Dracula begins with the diary kept by Jonathan Harker 
  • Harker plans to take notes throughout his journey so that he can share the details of his adventures with his fiancée 
  • In his first diary entry, Harker describes the picturesque countryside of Eastern Europe and he talks about the ‘exotic’ food he has tasted at the roadside inns – ‘Othering’ 
  • Dracula begins with the diary kept by Jonathan Harker 
  • Harker plans to take notes throughout his journey so that he can share the details of his adventures with his fiancée 
  • In his first diary entry, Harker describes the picturesque countryside of Eastern Europe and he talks about the ‘exotic’ food he has tasted at the roadside inns – ‘Othering’ 

Strange Occurrences

  • After spending the might at an inn, the innkeeper’s wife delivers an ominous warning: She reminds Harker that it is the eve of St. George’s Day, when “all the evil things in the world will have full sway.”  
  • St. George was a Roman soldier that converted to Christianity and legend says that he slayed a dragon, which is representative of Satan or the devil 
  • After spending the might at an inn, the innkeeper’s wife delivers an ominous warning: She reminds Harker that it is the eve of St. George’s Day, when “all the evil things in the world will have full sway.”  
  • St. George was a Roman soldier that converted to Christianity and legend says that he slayed a dragon, which is representative of Satan or the devil 

Religious Imagery

  • The innkeeper puts a crucifix around his neck 
  • Harker is an Anglican and he seems to think that this kind of ‘Catholic practice’ is idolatrous and maybe even a bit superstitious 
  • But he takes the crucifix anyway 
  • The innkeeper puts a crucifix around his neck 
  • Harker is an Anglican and he seems to think that this kind of ‘Catholic practice’ is idolatrous and maybe even a bit superstitious 
  • But he takes the crucifix anyway 

Journey to Transylvania

  • Harker takes a coach to the castle and Stoker sets a scene of discontent: people are speaking a language Harker cannot understand, the people on the coach make the sign of the cross at him as a means of protection (from what??), and as night approaches, the pace of the horses speeds up and he gets the sense that they are just travelling in circles 
  • Harker takes a coach to the castle and Stoker sets a scene of discontent: people are speaking a language Harker cannot understand, the people on the coach make the sign of the cross at him as a means of protection (from what??), and as night approaches, the pace of the horses speeds up and he gets the sense that they are just travelling in circles 

The Scene

  • Stoker uses various literary mechanisms to put the reader in a state of unease: dark and stormy night, the howling of wild wolves, arrival at the castle during the night, ‘strange behaviour from the peasants’, etc.  
  • Stoker uses various literary mechanisms to put the reader in a state of unease: dark and stormy night, the howling of wild wolves, arrival at the castle during the night, ‘strange behaviour from the peasants’, etc.  

Chapter 1 Analysis

  • Harker seems to consider these apotropaic devices ‘superstitious’ at the beginning and he even doubts the reality of his own experience 
  • Harker’s experience suggests that the foundational elements of Western civilization—reason, scientific advancement, and economic power—are threatened by the unknown, the Others, or what might be considered ‘alternative knowledge’ (ie. what Harker classifies as superstition)  
  • Harker seems to consider these apotropaic devices ‘superstitious’ at the beginning and he even doubts the reality of his own experience 
  • Harker’s experience suggests that the foundational elements of Western civilization—reason, scientific advancement, and economic power—are threatened by the unknown, the Others, or what might be considered ‘alternative knowledge’ (ie. what Harker classifies as superstition)  

Freud’s ‘Uncanny’

  • Harker’s description of his ascent to the castle as “uncanny” foreshadows the psychological horror of the novel – In 1919, Sigmund Freud published an essay called “The Uncanny,” in which he analyzed the implications of feelings and sensations that arouse “dread and horror.”  
  • Freud concludes that uncanny experiences generally occur in two specific situations: First, they can arise when primitive, supposedly disproved beliefs suddenly seem to be confirmed or validated once again. Like for example, when Harker (who likely doesn’t believe in the existence of were-wolves) encounters the howling wolves along the way. Second, the uncanny can arise when repressed infantile complexes are revived  
  • Harker’s description of his ascent to the castle as “uncanny” foreshadows the psychological horror of the novel – In 1919, Sigmund Freud published an essay called “The Uncanny,” in which he analyzed the implications of feelings and sensations that arouse “dread and horror.”  
  • Freud concludes that uncanny experiences generally occur in two specific situations: First, they can arise when primitive, supposedly disproved beliefs suddenly seem to be confirmed or validated once again. Like for example, when Harker (who likely doesn’t believe in the existence of were-wolves) encounters the howling wolves along the way. Second, the uncanny can arise when repressed infantile complexes are revived  

Chapter 2

  • After a lengthy wait outside, Dracula finally appears and welcomes Harker 
  • He is dressed all in black and has the following features: he is a tall old man, who is clean-shaven aside from a long, white moustache, pale skin, sharp teeth (ie. animal or predator)  
  • Harker notes the strong grip of his handshake and that his ice-cold hands are more like those of a dead man than a living one  
  • After a lengthy wait outside, Dracula finally appears and welcomes Harker 
  • He is dressed all in black and has the following features: he is a tall old man, who is clean-shaven aside from a long, white moustache, pale skin, sharp teeth (ie. animal or predator)  
  • Harker notes the strong grip of his handshake and that his ice-cold hands are more like those of a dead man than a living one  

The Next Day

  • Harker wakes up and Dracula is absent so Harker explores the castle and finds no servants and no mirrors 
  • Dracula meets Harker in the evening and they chat about work but also about the pervasiveness of evil spirits in Transylvania 
  • Harker describes the house that the count has purchased: it is an old mansion called Carfax and it is isolated, with only a ‘lunatic asylum’ and an old chapel nearby (juxtaposition of good and evil) 
  • Harker wakes up and Dracula is absent so Harker explores the castle and finds no servants and no mirrors 
  • Dracula meets Harker in the evening and they chat about work but also about the pervasiveness of evil spirits in Transylvania 
  • Harker describes the house that the count has purchased: it is an old mansion called Carfax and it is isolated, with only a ‘lunatic asylum’ and an old chapel nearby (juxtaposition of good and evil) 

The Shaving Incident

  • Dracula walks into the room while Harker is shaving and he is so startled that he accidentally cuts himself  
  • He also notices that the count has no reflection in the mirror, which scares him – readers in Victorian England would know the implication – that this monster has no soul  
  • Harker is also afraid by Dracula’s reaction to the sight of his blood: the count lunges for his  throat, leaving him alone only after touching the string of beads that holds Harker’s crucifix (ie. rosary) 
  • Realization: All of the doors are locked and Harker comes to the conclusion that he is a prisoner in the castle 
  • Dracula walks into the room while Harker is shaving and he is so startled that he accidentally cuts himself  
  • He also notices that the count has no reflection in the mirror, which scares him – readers in Victorian England would know the implication – that this monster has no soul  
  • Harker is also afraid by Dracula’s reaction to the sight of his blood: the count lunges for his  throat, leaving him alone only after touching the string of beads that holds Harker’s crucifix (ie. rosary) 
  • Realization: All of the doors are locked and Harker comes to the conclusion that he is a prisoner in the castle 

Chapter 3

  • That night, the two men speak about the history of Transylvania and Dracula speaks enthusiastically of the country’s people and battles, and he is proud of his family name 
  • He also tells Harker to write letters to his fiancée and employer, telling them that he will extend his stay in Transylvania by a month and Harker agrees but feels like he has no other option  
  • When Harker goes to bed, he hangs his crucifix above his bed(for protection)  and once he thinks the count is gone he resumes his exploration of the castle 
  • He sees Dracula crawling down the sheer face of the castle  
  • That night, the two men speak about the history of Transylvania and Dracula speaks enthusiastically of the country’s people and battles, and he is proud of his family name 
  • He also tells Harker to write letters to his fiancée and employer, telling them that he will extend his stay in Transylvania by a month and Harker agrees but feels like he has no other option  
  • When Harker goes to bed, he hangs his crucifix above his bed(for protection)  and once he thinks the count is gone he resumes his exploration of the castle 
  • He sees Dracula crawling down the sheer face of the castle  

Vampire Sisters

  • Harker forces a locked room open and falls asleep 
  • Harker is visited—(maybe in a dream, maybe in reality)—by three beautiful women with inhumanly red lips and sharp teeth and they fill him with ‘burning desire’ 
  • Just as one of the women bends and places her lips against his neck, Dracula sweeps in, ordering the women to leave Harker alone and says, “When I am done with him you shall kiss him at your will,” the count tells them 
  • To appease them, Dracula offers them a bag containing a small, “half-smothered” child and Harker drifts into unconsciousness  
  • Harker forces a locked room open and falls asleep 
  • Harker is visited—(maybe in a dream, maybe in reality)—by three beautiful women with inhumanly red lips and sharp teeth and they fill him with ‘burning desire’ 
  • Just as one of the women bends and places her lips against his neck, Dracula sweeps in, ordering the women to leave Harker alone and says, “When I am done with him you shall kiss him at your will,” the count tells them 
  • To appease them, Dracula offers them a bag containing a small, “half-smothered” child and Harker drifts into unconsciousness  

Analysis

  • Harker is visited by the three female vampires, who dance seductively and their appearance in the room where Harker is sleeping is undeniably sexual, as Harker’s description suggests 
  • He notes “the ruby of their voluptuous lips” and feels “a wicked, burning desire that they would kiss me.”  and as he stretches beneath the advancing women “in an agony of delightful anticipation,” his position suggests a sex act 
  • Harker is confronting another creature equally terrifying to Victorian England: an overtly sexual woman (danger to male intellect, morality, and rationality) 
  • Harker is visited by the three female vampires, who dance seductively and their appearance in the room where Harker is sleeping is undeniably sexual, as Harker’s description suggests 
  • He notes “the ruby of their voluptuous lips” and feels “a wicked, burning desire that they would kiss me.”  and as he stretches beneath the advancing women “in an agony of delightful anticipation,” his position suggests a sex act 
  • Harker is confronting another creature equally terrifying to Victorian England: an overtly sexual woman (danger to male intellect, morality, and rationality) 

Chapter 4

  • Harker wakes up in his own bed the next day, unsure whether the previous night’s experience was a dream or reality  
  • Dracula asks Harker write three letters to his fiancée and employer, and to date them June 12, 19, and 29, even though it is only May 19  
  • Harker wakes up in his own bed the next day, unsure whether the previous night’s experience was a dream or reality  
  • Dracula asks Harker write three letters to his fiancée and employer, and to date them June 12, 19, and 29, even though it is only May 19  

Attempt at Escape

  • Meanwhile, a party of Gypsies has come to the castle, and Harker, hoping for a chance to escape, resolves to ask them to send a letter to Mina 
  • Harker passes his secret correspondence to a Gypsy through the bars of his window but later Dracula appears with the letter in hand, angry that Harker has betrayed him 
  • Meanwhile, a party of Gypsies has come to the castle, and Harker, hoping for a chance to escape, resolves to ask them to send a letter to Mina 
  • Harker passes his secret correspondence to a Gypsy through the bars of his window but later Dracula appears with the letter in hand, angry that Harker has betrayed him 

A prisoner

  • Several weeks pass and as mid-June approaches, and Harker remains a prisoner  
  • More Gypsies arrive at the castle, and Harker sees them unloading large wooden boxes from a wagon  
  • Dracula also has a bag very similar to the one earlier devoured by the three terrible women, which convinces Harker that his host is using the disguise to commit horrible acts (which is confirmed later by a woman crying at the gate that her child is gone) 
  • Harker finds fifty boxes of earth in a secret passage. He opens several of the boxes and discovers the count in one of them, either dead or asleep  
  • Several weeks pass and as mid-June approaches, and Harker remains a prisoner  
  • More Gypsies arrive at the castle, and Harker sees them unloading large wooden boxes from a wagon  
  • Dracula also has a bag very similar to the one earlier devoured by the three terrible women, which convinces Harker that his host is using the disguise to commit horrible acts (which is confirmed later by a woman crying at the gate that her child is gone) 
  • Harker finds fifty boxes of earth in a secret passage. He opens several of the boxes and discovers the count in one of them, either dead or asleep  

The Wolf as ‘Evil’

  • On June 29, Dracula promises Harker that he can leave the next day, but Harker requests to leave immediately 
  • Though his host agrees and opens the front door, Harker’s departure is impeded by a waiting pack of wolves  
  • The three vampire women re-appear and Harker prays 
  • He later finds Dracula is asleep as before, but looks younger and well-rested 
  • Harker notices blood trickling down from the corners of his mouth so takes up a shovel and strikes the count with the intent to kill him but it inflicts no harm (supernatural evil) 
  • On June 29, Dracula promises Harker that he can leave the next day, but Harker requests to leave immediately 
  • Though his host agrees and opens the front door, Harker’s departure is impeded by a waiting pack of wolves  
  • The three vampire women re-appear and Harker prays 
  • He later finds Dracula is asleep as before, but looks younger and well-rested 
  • Harker notices blood trickling down from the corners of his mouth so takes up a shovel and strikes the count with the intent to kill him but it inflicts no harm (supernatural evil) 

Analysis

  • Dracula’s apparent consumption of blood and occupation of the coffin confirms Harker’s suspicions that Dracula possesses some type of supernatural power that is very dangerous 
  • Dracula’s ability to resist or repel physical harm is also concerning to Harker because this seems to be his only option to depart from the castle 
  • Dracula’s apparent consumption of blood and occupation of the coffin confirms Harker’s suspicions that Dracula possesses some type of supernatural power that is very dangerous 
  • Dracula’s ability to resist or repel physical harm is also concerning to Harker because this seems to be his only option to depart from the castle 

Chapter 5

  • This chapter consists of several letters and a diary entry – Mina Murray and her friend Lucy exchange letters about their respective romances  
  • Mina is excited about her fiancée Harker’s impending return and Lucy describes various marriage proposals she has received from several suitors – important detail to remember for later 
  • Dr. Seward is also introduced (Lucy rejected his proposal) and he describes his work at the asylum with a new patient named Renfield 
  • This chapter consists of several letters and a diary entry – Mina Murray and her friend Lucy exchange letters about their respective romances  
  • Mina is excited about her fiancée Harker’s impending return and Lucy describes various marriage proposals she has received from several suitors – important detail to remember for later 
  • Dr. Seward is also introduced (Lucy rejected his proposal) and he describes his work at the asylum with a new patient named Renfield 

Analysis

  • Lucy and Mina are contrasted with the 3 vampire sisters in Transylvania as idealized figures of femininity 
  • Lucy and Mina represent purity and goodness, while the sisters in Dracula’s castle represent corruption, danger, sex, and evil  
  • BUT: Lucy writes: “Why can’t they let a girl marry three men, or as many as want her, and save all this trouble?” Though Lucy immediately condemns her own words as “heresy,” her apology does not negate her desire to experience life beyond conventional morality  
  • Lucy and Mina are contrasted with the 3 vampire sisters in Transylvania as idealized figures of femininity 
  • Lucy and Mina represent purity and goodness, while the sisters in Dracula’s castle represent corruption, danger, sex, and evil  
  • BUT: Lucy writes: “Why can’t they let a girl marry three men, or as many as want her, and save all this trouble?” Though Lucy immediately condemns her own words as “heresy,” her apology does not negate her desire to experience life beyond conventional morality  

Chapter 6

  • In her journal, Mina describes her visit with Lucy and a ruined abbey that is reputed to be haunted (reference to empty graves by a local man that foreshadows strangeness) 
  • The Narrative then switches to Dr. Seward, who continues to report the curious case of his patient Renfield in his diary and the patient has an odd habit of eating living creatures (he desires to absorb as many lives as he can!) 
  • Mina’s sadness turns to fear over her missing fiancé and over Lucy, who has begun to sleepwalk during the night (she also sees a strange ship in the distance) 
  • In her journal, Mina describes her visit with Lucy and a ruined abbey that is reputed to be haunted (reference to empty graves by a local man that foreshadows strangeness) 
  • The Narrative then switches to Dr. Seward, who continues to report the curious case of his patient Renfield in his diary and the patient has an odd habit of eating living creatures (he desires to absorb as many lives as he can!) 
  • Mina’s sadness turns to fear over her missing fiancé and over Lucy, who has begun to sleepwalk during the night (she also sees a strange ship in the distance) 

Analysis

  • Renfield’s consumption of flies, spiders, and sparrows takes place because he believes that their lives are transferred into his own, providing him with strength and vitality  
  • His behaviour also mirrors Dracula’s at this point – the consumption of living entities to attain strength and life force 
  • Renfield’s consumption of flies, spiders, and sparrows takes place because he believes that their lives are transferred into his own, providing him with strength and vitality  
  • His behaviour also mirrors Dracula’s at this point – the consumption of living entities to attain strength and life force 

Chapter 7

  • The strange ship washes ashore during a storm – the crew is missing and the captain is dead (clutching a crucifix!)  
  • The only cargo was a collection of wooden boxes that were delivered to a lawyer’s office  
  • A large dog (wolf-like) jumps from the cargo hold and runs off into the countryside 
  • The strange ship washes ashore during a storm – the crew is missing and the captain is dead (clutching a crucifix!)  
  • The only cargo was a collection of wooden boxes that were delivered to a lawyer’s office  
  • A large dog (wolf-like) jumps from the cargo hold and runs off into the countryside 

Captain’s Log

  • Selections from the captain’s log of the Demeter follow, describing the ship’s voyage to England from the Russian port of Varna – it is important to note that the point of departure is again from the “east”, which further serves to create that Other or sense of exoticism that we saw Harker feel in Transylvania  
  • The trip starts off well, but ten days into the voyage, a crewmember is found missing. Soon thereafter, another sailor spots a tall, thin man who is not like any of the crew  
  • They become fearful and continue to disappear one by one and as they approach the harbour, it becomes too foggy to see and the captain resolves to fight for his ship and destroy this monster 
  • Selections from the captain’s log of the Demeter follow, describing the ship’s voyage to England from the Russian port of Varna – it is important to note that the point of departure is again from the “east”, which further serves to create that Other or sense of exoticism that we saw Harker feel in Transylvania  
  • The trip starts off well, but ten days into the voyage, a crewmember is found missing. Soon thereafter, another sailor spots a tall, thin man who is not like any of the crew  
  • They become fearful and continue to disappear one by one and as they approach the harbour, it becomes too foggy to see and the captain resolves to fight for his ship and destroy this monster 

Back to Mina

  • Mina describes the night of the dreaded storm, her fears for Jonathan, and her concern for Lucy, who continues to sleepwalk  
  • On the day of the sea captain’s funeral, Mina reports that Lucy is increasingly restless and Mina thinks that the reason for this is because of Mr. Swales’ death (broken neck and look of horror) 
  • Mina describes the night of the dreaded storm, her fears for Jonathan, and her concern for Lucy, who continues to sleepwalk  
  • On the day of the sea captain’s funeral, Mina reports that Lucy is increasingly restless and Mina thinks that the reason for this is because of Mr. Swales’ death (broken neck and look of horror) 

Analysis

  • There is a clear link here between the monster on the ship and Dracula as well as the cargo on the ship 
  • Swales predicted his own death and it actually happens, which causes Lucy’s sleepwalking symptoms to worsen – link? 
  • There is a clear link here between the monster on the ship and Dracula as well as the cargo on the ship 
  • Swales predicted his own death and it actually happens, which causes Lucy’s sleepwalking symptoms to worsen – link? 

Calculate your order
Pages (275 words)
Standard price: $0.00
Client Reviews
4.9
Sitejabber
4.6
Trustpilot
4.8
Our Guarantees
100% Confidentiality
Information about customers is confidential and never disclosed to third parties.
Original Writing
We complete all papers from scratch. You can get a plagiarism report.
Timely Delivery
No missed deadlines – 97% of assignments are completed in time.
Money Back
If you're confident that a writer didn't follow your order details, ask for a refund.

Calculate the price of your order

You will get a personal manager and a discount.
We'll send you the first draft for approval by at
Total price:
$0.00
Power up Your Academic Success with the
Team of Professionals. We’ve Got Your Back.
Power up Your Study Success with Experts We’ve Got Your Back.
Live Chat+1(978) 822-0999EmailWhatsApp

Order your essay today and save 20% with the discount code GOODESSAY