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Lecture 5

ENG239H1 Lecture 5: Dracula - Bram Stoker


Department
English
Course Code
ENG239H1
Professor
Mike Johnstone
Lecture
5

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Dracula Bram Stoker (Chapters 15-27)
The Vampire as Abject
- The monster is a disturbance of the natural order of things
- When Lucy becomes a vampire she embodies the symbolic characteristics of a
women taking rather than giving
- Takes children’s blood doesn’t give anything in return
- By becoming a vampire Lucy becomes a hyper sexualized version of herself
- Lucy’s true death (Pg.230)
- Argued to essentially be a “gang rape”
- The stake is an impressive “instrument” (his stake)
- Lucy is vulnerable to the men’s actions, cannot consent to the violence that is
being done to her body
- Contest of patriarchal power
- Arthur regains his sexual control by killing her and returning her to the
purity she had before becoming a vampire
- Refer to Lucy as “the thing” dehumanizing her and talking away her gender
- Helps justify her death by talking away her identity, have less emotional
attachment for a “thing” than you do a person
- Dracula’s death is dehumanized, only Lucy’s death
- Something that is abjected is something that is deemed abnormal, inferior or
unworthy in someway (“other”) anything that we reject
- The abject cannot assimilate
- Horror is exemplified by the abject
- That which horrifies is that which we abject
- Can think of the vampire as an abject
- Dracula is described as repulsive and is shunned by the people in Transylvania
as well as by the main characters (those that live in London)
- Pg.351-352
- Mina has been made a possible abject by Dracula and has been forced to
ingest the blood of the abject (Dracula)
- After becoming abjected Mina is not treated the same way by the men
- Important that the men kill Dracula they reclaim their patriarchy/ their status
- Return to the status quo the men reclaim their power while the only women,
Mina, stands by and is saved and does nothing to help the men
The Vampire as Threat to Nation and Race
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