Sunday, 2 August 2015

Scattered thoughts on Dracula, on the plot, devices, character types, parallels

In Dracula, everyone keeps notes of some sort (mostly journals) and nobody tells anybody anything. The plot of Dracula depends on the characters' silence, or to be precise, their decision to keep information to themselves; especially the 2 persons who know the most, Jonathan Harker and Dr Van Helsing. Their refusal to share information and warn others, similar to Frankenstein's, is necessary for the plot. Bram Stoker needs some other tools to keep the story going. We have Lucy Westenra, who sleepwalks and falls victim to we-know-what. A pure woman, perfect according to Victorian standards, she's reminiscent of Laura Fairlie in The Woman in White. Then we have Mrs Westenra, the silly woman who means well but ruins everything, like Mrs Michelson and Mrs Clements in The Woman in White
On page 136. Will write more later, I'm trying to put together some pieces. Perhaps Lucy isn't so pure and lovely after all- she studies her own face, and when telling Mina about her 3 proposals in 1 day, she asks "Why can't they let a girl marry 3 men, or as many as want her, and save all this trouble?". 
If we ignore the way the people in Dracula have blood transfusions without regard to blood type, there is something quite erotic, in Bram Stoker's description, about the men giving blood to the woman they love. 
Also, I wonder if there's any significant parallel between Lucy and the 3 suitors, and Jonathan and the 3 female vampires in Dracula's castle. 

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