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Dracula: The Picture Perfect Ideal Of Gothic Literature

1153 words - 5 pages

Dracula: The Picture Perfect Ideal of Gothic Literature.
Gothicism has been a very popular genre of book, through past and present, and Bram Stoker’s, Dracula, is no exception. One of the most widely read novels of all time, Dracula possesses all the features of a classic gothic novel. The various dark and dreary features throughout the entire novel paints a perfect gothic picture for the reader and contribute to the mixture of feelings One gets while reading Dracula. The first feature of Gothicism found in Dracula is a constant and oppressive darkness. This feature is a reoccurring theme that is related to everything in the novel from the characters to the events that take place. Another feature found in Dracula is presence of a ‘supernatural’ villain. Supernaturalism also surrounds the villain, Count Dracula in the countryside of Transylvania with the numerous superstitions that consume the local inhabitants. Finally, the reference to sleeping, dreaming and the blurriness of reality faced by some of the characters adds eeriness and unrest, enhancing the gothic premise of the novel. These examples are all traits of which gothic literature consists of. Through this paper, I will prove that due to the use of darkness, the supernatural and the blurred sense of reality, Dracula is a prime example of gothic literature.
Darkness is a main element in gothic literature. In Dracula, the darkness is projected on everything including characters and even the events that take place are all under a blanket of darkness. The presence of darkness is a relation to evil and corruption. In the novel, darkness projects itself on people, places and things and often takes form in a dark, shadowy figure, the weather and even on to time, as it links the darkness of night to terrible events taking place. In a journal entry on the 25th of June, Jonathan Harker, after being trapped in the Castle Dracula for weeks, witnesses the Count climb out of his bedroom window and down the side of the castle wall like a lizard, returning with a small child. After hearing the muffled cry from the child, Harker then hears the desperate cries from the mother from outside the castle wall and watches helplessly as the Count calls his wolves to destroy her. The next morning, Jonathan says, ‘No man knows till he has suffered from the night how sweet and how dear to him heart and eye the morning can be.’ (Dracula, 39) This quote shows how the dark night mirrors evil and unpleasantness, which enhances the gloominess of Gothicism. Darkness is also projected on to characters. The villain, Count Dracula, when sighted, is described as a dark and shadowy figure. Mina Harker woke up to find Lucy Westerna missing from her bed in the middle of the night, and knowing her past of sleep walking, Mina hurriedly looked around the house to find the front door open. She stepped outside and looked across to the cliff where their favourite spot to sit was and describes what she saw: ‘...there...

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