Gender Roles In Dracula

1596 Words 7 Pages
Phenomenon of vampires is highly incorporated in today’s popular culture with a large number of books, films, and TV-series about them emerging every year. Still, many people cannot deny that Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” is an exceptional literary creation that stood at the origins of the cult of vampires. Not only did this Victorian novel, written in 1897, become a landmark piece of gothic literature, but also it defined the contemporary form and image of vampires and paved the way for multiple interpretations in modern culture. Nevertheless, “Dracula” is not just an outstanding horror fiction book. It is also a profound insight into Victorian age – a defining time in the history of the Western world, when so many cornerstones of society began …show more content…
Victorian view of a perfect woman generally reposed on the ideas of purity, chastity, obedience, and maternity. A young girl would be brought up to look forward to being a noble wife, a great mother, and the guardian of the hearth (Perkin 47). Active participation in social life as well as taking care of the family finances was the responsibility of men. This was a picture of a traditional patriarchal family in the Victorian England, where the action of the novel takes place. However, emergence of the Suffragette movement in the second half of the century and circulation of feminist ideas among the upper-class challenged conventional views of the female role in the British society. Thus, the New Women came into view. They were ready to fight for their voice to be heard, partake in social life, and manifest their right for self-actualization. It is no wonder that, after many centuries of shaping and maintaining certain convenient gender roles, society refused to accept the new image of a strong independent woman. This particular anxiety and rejection of the New Women by Victorian men is reflected in “Dracula” by means of demonizing and vulgarizing them. One of the ways Stoker depicts the rejection and, in a way, fear of the New Women, is contrasting them to the conventional noble female characters. This comparison is clearly shown through the example of Mina on one side, and the three Brides of Dracula on the other. Undoubtedly, Mina represents an ideal of a Victorian woman. She is intelligent, noble, innocent, and devoted to her man. Bram Stoker expresses the male point of view on this type of woman when Van Helsing says about

Related Documents