Prompt: Consider a non-vampire significant character or group of characters founding more than one of or vampire stores so far and develop a theory concerning the importance and/or frequent appearance of this character in vampire narratives.
Response: I think this is the prompt I am going to write my essay on, because it seems the most intriguing to me. Even though Dracula is the key character of the book, this essay forces you to look at other characters, who also directly help create the image of Dracula. I think one of the main alternative character groups in this book that I am interested in would be Lucy’s love triad members: Arthur, Seward, and Quincy. Yet, I am also very interested in Lucy and Mina as the best friend pair who are both possibly eventually overcome by Dracula and his evil. In case I chose neither of these two groups, I think another interesting alternative character group would be all the people/things that Dracula is seeming to have a very powerful effect over: Renfield, Bersicker(the wolf), and the weather/storms.
One of the most distinguishable characteristics of both Dracula and Varney is the very dramatic language. As went over in class, this is both due to the general style of vampire stories as well as just they way people of that time spoke. The language, paired with the tone, creates the very suspenseful story that the reader follows but it also has its moments of foreshadowing primarily caused by how the story is written from the first person point of view and everyone seems to be very curios as to what is going on all the time in all of their journal entries, telegrams, and letters.
Another seemingly important comparison that can be made in the story is the fact that although everyone has suspicions that a vampire is lurking, nobody comes out and says it. In Dracula, they wait all the way until Lucy dies to bring up the fact that she had been attacked by a vampire and in Varney they thought it all along that it may be a vampire yet its brought up relatively late, I believe this is due to the fact that just like we, the audience, do not necessarily believe in vampires, nor do the characters-to build up suspense within the story by building suspense in themselves which of course builds up suspense in the reader. I also think they may not initially reveal it’s a vampire due to possibly strong religious beliefs that would dispel such things being offensive since the higher classes of the time were typically the money behind the churches and believed that through their monetary contributions they were safe from evils as well as some of God’s most loved children.
Also, most of the visual builds of the vampires as well as their complimentary damsels are the same, yet its hilarious how both Varney and Dracula seem kind of tacky looking. I understand that their visual descriptions is supposed to create a frightening appearance, yet when I think of it and add whatever action they are engaged in(Varney jumping the huge wall and failing several times before actually getting over it, Dracula climbing down a wall like a lizard) it just seems very silly to me. As for their damsels, looks like they shouldn’t sleep so pretty at night…and they also should take heavy sedatives to prevent them from restlessness and sleepwalking.
Ultimately thus far, I like Dracula a lot more than Varney, and I think its because its written in first person. I also like it more because it generally flows a little better than Varney for me. And I also like it because everyone seems to exclaim quite a few things when they write in their journals/diaries. And now I just realized I like it, because everyone journals so piously…when they aren’t being hypnotized or giving blood transfusions or tending to a dying relative.
Well, apparently I signed up for the Literature and Culture class that is focused on Vampires. This blog is created for the class itself as we are to turn in some of our writing assignments/discussions of various topics.
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