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Victorian Women in Dracula by Bram Stoker

Updated November 23, 2021
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Victorian Women in Dracula by Bram Stoker essay

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In article, Case aims to showcase a narrative struggle between Mina and the male characters, who appear in Dracula. Within her introduction, it is implied that the significance of the narrative mastery and struggle revolves around masculinity and femininity. Case contributes something new to gender criticism by focusing on the narrative struggles between Mina and the male characters. Furthermore, Case evaluates Lucy as an agent of a new woman. In other words, Case refers to her as a progressive female figure in Dracula. Also, she labels Mina as a representative of a complicated struggle between old-style femininity and intellectual agency. Primarily, the article’s main ideas concentrates on the sacrifice of narrative authority between Mina and the male characters demonstrate That is, Case provides a thorough analysis and comparison between the narratives on the male and female characters.

First, Case insinuates that Mina achieves an agency through her collection of thoughts. This leads to her being a source of information, which Case explores. More notably, she emphasizes Mina as an active force; additionally, she aims to assert Mina as an active participant in accomplishing her own narration. However, Case suggests that Van Helsing and his group exploited Mina’s knowledge to subjugate her. Besides focusing on Mina’s narration, Case provides examples on Mina’s attempt for narrative authority: her diary, encounter with Dracula, and her reading the journals as examples of withholding knowledge.

In contrast, Case rebuffs her argument by using Dracula, who attacks Mina, as a way to illustrate male dominance Since Case asserts their fight over Dracula, they change their policy towards Mina and decide to incorporate in their group. Ultimately, Case argues that Mina’s journal demonstrates less significance to the narrative because it results in the male character dominating her. To put Case’s analysis bluntly, the male character’s narrative overshadows the women’s narrative, as Case implicates.

Furthermore, the threat of vampirism makes Mina vulnerable to disposition of narrative, according to Case. With the investigation of the Journals, Case claims that Mina becomes an object of interpretation. Instead of achieving her own sense of narrative authority, one implication of Case’s treatment on Mina is that she embodies the New Woman, and now has her own narrative. Ultimately, Case asserts that the novel conforms Mina to a feminized victim from her narrative struggle. In other words, Mina relies and conforms to male figures, such as Dracula and Van Helsing, to catch an antagonist.

By keeping gender into perspective, Case analyzes that Stoker plays with gender issues. In her conclusion, Case declares that the male narrative functions as the primary one in Dracula. However, Case suggests that men and women’s narratives is born of unlikely content. That is, Case implies that the male and female characters contribute equally to Dracula. Lastly, this article connects to my argument because it concentrates on men’s treatment of women. In the end, this article specifically echoes my thesis by the men’s agency outweighing women’s agency in Dracula.

In article, Rosenberg aims to scrutinize Dracula for a reflection on the social and gender anxieties of the Victorian period. She asserts that Mina and Lucy are the female characters, whom the male figures rely on. Rosenberg hints at sexuality as a passageway for women to express their independence. As an example, the article employs a historical comparison of Eve/Mary and Mina/Lucy to contrast their ideologies, which points out the representations of a Victorian woman. Conversely, Rosenberg categorizes women as innocent and virgin figures, whom stay with their family. But, women, who did not embody a victorian, were viewed negatively, and Rosenberg claims that sexual impulses were to be resisted.

As a result, it was frowned upon Victorian society to have sexual desire. However, Rosenberg indicates that Mina and Lucy have a sexual desire for a new representation of new woman. Importantly, Rosenberg suggests that female sexual independence is a radical concept, which is allowed no middle ground. Moreover, Rosenberg provides Dr. Seward’s home as a setting, where the characters display their true identity. She acknowledges that the home represents a safe haven, which displays the mandate of the character’s desire.

Furthermore, Rosenberg supports gender role anxiety by asserting that men are emotional and women are rational. First, Rosen analyzes the depth on the concept of hysteria. She provides the male characters as illustrations of showing hysteria. Specifically, Rosenberg supplements Arthur to illustrate women’s rationality. Importantly, this example places Mina within a rational sphere and Arthur within an irrational sphere. In addition to the insane asylum, Rosenberg conducts a thorough analysis on Jonathan, and asserts that he cannot protect Mina due to Dracula’s influence. Significantly, Rosenberg provides Dracula as an example of illustrating gender role anxieties since he disrupts the gender normalities in the novel.

In other words, Rosenberg provides Dracula’s influence on Mina, so that they can rescue her from her anxiety, which is displayed through behavioral tendencies. In her conclusion, Rosenberg informs Dracula as a commentary on the Victorian social issues, which pertain to gender and sexuality, during the Victorian period. She recommends that Stoker stimulates discussion on the role of gender in Dracula. Ultimately, she encourages the reader to read Dracula the way they want. This article relates to my subject since it specifically focuses on Mina’s struggle for agency. In other words, the traditional patriarchal structure overpowers her agency no matter how rational she appears in the novel.

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Victorian Women in Dracula by Bram Stoker. (2021, Nov 23). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/victorian-women-in-dracula-by-bram-stoker/

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