To undergo this research, I had went through several stairss, several methods which truly assist me to do this research a success. First, when making this research, I had referred to several web sites in the cyberspace to derive information about what are the definitions of the term feminism and besides how was the life for Victorian adult females in 19th century. I besides visited many forums that involved experts from all around the universe, inquiring them inquiries about anything that came across my head.
Following, I besides referred to several books found at the library in my hometown and even the 1 that have in MARA College Banting itself.
“ Dracula ” A is anA 1897A fresh byA IrishA authorA Bram Stoker, having as its primary adversary, the lamia, Count Dracula. The impacts of this novel can be seen clearly even presents. It has been attributed to many literary genres including lamia literature, horror fiction, Gothic novels and besides invasion literature. Structurally, it is different from any novels written, as it is in a signifier of epistolatory novel, which consists of series of diary entries and letters.
“ Dracula ” has merely come to be accepted as anything more than ‘just another Gothic novel ‘ for the last 30 old ages. It may non be the first scientific discipline fiction novel authored in the universe, but its impact towards the universe of literature is great plenty to demo how great the influence is. In these 3 decennaries, displacements in values and position have caused “ Dracula ” to be a much studied and appreciated novel. Well, people have looked at the novel from different positions and seen that value can be taken from the novel utilizing a figure of motivations from the text. Stoker ‘s text presents the reader with a window through which they can see clearly the attitudes and positions of the Victorian society of that clip. One of these positions, or readings, shows that the novel can be used to back up that the novel can be read through a women’s rightist ‘s point of position. Mentioning to Wikipedia, feminism can be used to depict a political, cultural or economic motion aimed at set uping equal rights and legal protection for adult females. Feminism involvesA political, A culturalA andA sociologicalA theories, every bit good asA philosophiesA concerned with issues ofA gender difference. It is besides a motion that advocatesA gender equalityA for adult females and runs forA adult females ‘s rightsA and involvements[ 1 ]. Looking at the features of the adult females characters in the novel and besides the background of the narrative itself pushed me to look the novel from a women’s rightist ‘s point of position. From this text, we will see how the feminism issues are being brought up by Stoker through the female characters in “ Dracula ” . We can besides see how the adult females in Victorian epoch were historically being viewed as second-class citizens by work forces from Stoker ‘s ain position through the characters found in the novel.
Part 1: Woman ‘S LIFE IS BEING CONTROLLED
Throughout the whole “ Dracula ” novel, we can see that feminism issues that involve suppression of work forces towards adult females in 19th century are being stressed out by Bram Stoker particularly in cultural and political facets. Even from the early portion of the novel, we can already see the issue of the female rights towards their ain life from the three lamia ladies met by Jonathan Harker, the male supporter in “ Dracula ” while he is being imprisoned at the Count ‘s palace. They are the Count ‘s ladies, or in other words, they are being treated as his slaves. They are really much stereotyped adult females of the Victorian society. Their physical expressions truly bespeak how the Victorian adult females during this era expression like – they are really beautiful, have oning beautiful frocks everyplace, but yet, they are being suppressed particularly by the males.[ 2 ]3The three lady lamias from Dracula ‘s palace do non hold their freedom and all of their motions besides their actions are being to the full controlled by Dracula. They can non make anything they want, even to go forth the palace as they live by obeying and following Dracula ‘s orders either they want to or non.
“ With a ferocious expanse of his arm, he hurled the adult females from him, and so motioned to the others, as though he were crushing them back ; it was the same disdainful gestures that I had seen used to the wolves. ”[ 4 ]( Dracula, Dracula, 1897, p. 60 )
From this above citation, we can conceive of how difficult life is for these three ladies. Stoker even compares how they are being treated with how wolves are treated as they as more likely the same. Bing treated as animate beings, this is the 1 of the feminism issues that is tried to be brought upon by Stoker. He wanted to demo how the adult females in Victorian epoch being greatly suppressed by work forces during that clip. They did non hold their ain freedom to make what they want to make due to the suppressions by the males that clip.[ 5 ]
Part 2: Work force BEING ABLE TO DO ANYTHING THEY WANT TO WOMEN
`In nineteenth century, males are depicted as the immorality force which could make anything they wanted to the females without refering how the adult females felt. The adult females did non hold the rights to support themselves even though they were in injury. This issue is greatly being shown by the adult female character, Lucy Westenra. She is depicted as lovingness, loving, compassionate, well-bred, self-less and obedient. She is besides shown as a wholly inactive and submissive adult female. She does non even have thoughts of her ain as she ever relies on others even to do determinations. Lucy is a cheerful immature adult female who is much praised for her pureness, beauty and sweet nature. These qualities earn her three suers, all of whom propose to her on the same twenty-four hours who are Arthur Holmwood, Lord Godalming ; A Quincey Morris, anA AmericanA cowpuncher ; and DoctorA John Seward, anA asylumA head-shrinker. The beauty shown by Lucy indicates the beauty held by the Victorian adult females. In the novel, Lucy is seen as a wholly guiltless character. She is submissive, and a really stereotyped female.
“ How good they are to me! I rather love that beloved Dr. Van Helsing. I wonder why he was so dying about these flowers. He positively frightened me, he was so ferocious. ”[ 6 ]( Dracula, 1897, p. 211 )
This quotation mark above shows how guiltless Lucy is and at the same clip, how nescient she can be. She has no thought what is traveling on around her and she is merely making whatever she has been told to make, unquestioningly. She is attractive and loved really much by many work forces. This is most evident when three work forces propose to her on the one twenty-four hours which has already being stated above, and all these work forces are portion of the squad that finally defeat the lamia. Once the work forces realise the danger that Lucy is under, they want to protect her, but they are manner excessively late and Dracula is excessively far in front of them for Lucy to be saved. Lucy is represented in a really sympathetic manner by Stoker. The state of affairs where she is taken off by Dracula shows how the adult females suffer from work forces at that clip. Stoker sees her as the victim of a powerful evil force. This understanding shows that the writer is non taking a woman hater, which is a women-hater point of position. Therefore, it shows how the Victorian adult females suffered from the work forces who could make anything they wanted to without believing of how the adult females felt.
Part 3: Restriction OF ROLE OF WOMEN IN SOCIETY
nineteenth century Victorian adult females besides did non hold the opportunity to stand every bit high as the work forces did as their functions in the society were already being set up by the work forces in that epoch. The other female character which is Mina Murray besides represents this following issue. Like Lucy, she is besides depicted as loving and caring adult female, but there is a cardinal difference between both of them. Mina is non submissive as Lucy but she serves as a aid to the group of friends, who have made a treaty to work together to free the universe of the evil Count. Mina Murray, Stoker tries to demo how the adult females try to demo up themselves so they can stand up every bit high as work forces can. In world, the Victorian adult females besides did seek their best to demo the things that they could make so that they could be treated and accepted in a same manner as work forces were being treated at that clip. Mina realise that she besides has the duty to assist her squad even though she is a adult female. Mina is elevated to a certain place of power when she finds herself as a portion of the work forces ‘s programs to free the universe of the Count Dracula. In the group, her function is to type up the diaries. Even though it is merely a simple and easy undertaking, it is really helpful to the group, but is however a insistent and instead everyday undertaking. But she thinks that this is her topographic point, and so does it with complete devotedness and she uses enterprise to assist the group. She knows that she must make everything she could to lend to the group. The work forces bestow upon Mina the same duties and cognition that they all carry, but despite this, her function remained really different to that of the remainder of the work forces ‘s. The work forces spent more clip out of the house making research and probes, while Mina stayed back at the refuge. Just like in world, the topographic point for adult females in Victorian epoch had ever been their ain place.[ 7 ]In refuge, Mina took on both an active function but besides a inactive function – as she took action but was really limited in what she could make. Mina ‘s equality with the work forces ended when it came clip for them to travel and fight. It was seen as far excessively unsafe for her to take portion in the Hunt from now on, and so for her safety she was restricted to take any action. Besides, the work forces took this restriction one measure further. They decided amongst the group that Mina should no longer be informed and updated on what was go oning as it might “ scare ” her. They were besides afraid that Mina would take any unneeded actions when she knows something. In his diary, the supporter Jonathan Harker writes:
“ I am genuinely grateful that she is to be left out of our hereafter work, and even of our deliberations. It is excessively great a strain for a adult female to bear. I did non believe so at first but I know better now. ”[ 8 ]( Dracula, 1897, p. 404 )
This is another understanding of Stoker ‘s that he felt aguish that adult females are so restricted within their society. They do non hold their opportunity to demo up their true endowments and abilities as they ever being thought as doormats by work forces, so they would ne’er be able to lend at the same manner as work forces could.
This want of Mina ‘s power leaves her wholly in the dark. This topographic point, in the darkness, is where the Count manages to happen her. The Count knows of her significance to the group who are runing him. This state of affairs is shown in the novel:
“ And you, like the others, would play your encephalon against mine. You would assist these work forces to run and thwart me in my designs! ”[ 9 ]( Dracula, 1897, p. 458 )
Because of this, the Count forces Mina to imbibe a portion of him, his blood, and in making so forces upon her to be a portion of him. This shows that in despair, adult females would make anything even giving their lives, their prides and besides self-respect. This is the exact thing go oning to Mina. She wants to be accepted and felt appreciated in the group, therefore taking her to make this.
Part 4: Destiny OF THE WOMEN
When the work forces subsequently know that Mina has been kidnapped by the Count, they start to recognize what they have done. They realize that all of the things they did were incorrect and that they should non hold kept Mina out of their run, so she one time once more is informed of their programs. They know that they should hold brought along Mina with them and state Mina everything they know so that she would non move this manner. But it is already excessively late for them to recognize this.
“ aˆ¦ the really first thing we decided was that Mina should be kept in full assurance ; that nil of any kind – no affair how painful – should be kept from her. aˆ¦ ”[ 10 ]
( Dracula, 1897, p. 461 )
This is extremely important as the work forces in the fresh really know their mistake of judgement and they become witting that they should non hold treated this adult female otherwise to themselves. Again, this conveys Stoker ‘s understanding towards the adult females of the clip. Mina ‘s actions reflect the state of affairs happened to the adult females in 19th century where harlotries were everyplace. Whenever they failed to carry through their hubbies ‘ wants, they would be divorced, and subsequently on, these adult females would stop up selling their ain egos on the streets. Feeling sorry for the adult females, he tends to include this issue of feminism in his chef-d’oeuvre.
Part 5: WOMEN ‘S FREEDOM OF SPEECH
Subsequently in the novel, the work forces realize Mina ‘s connexion with Dracula and see that her ideas may be read by Dracula. So once more, she is deprived of the cognition that the remainder of the group portions, but this clip for a different ground – the ground of protecting Mina and acquiring rid of the Count. Alternatively of for Mina ‘s ain good, it is for the benefit of the whole group – and in bend besides for the good of man-kind. This transmutation of motivations and purposes is due to the group ‘s initial error before of concealing things from Mina. Dracula, described as the most powerful masculine evil figure in the novel, exploits Mina. It is more than merely taking her blood, but he can pull strings her and organize her to any of his will. This use is a symbol for adult females being dominated by work forces. The work forces who are runing Dracula are seeking to protect Mina, instead than command her, but in their effort they expose her and she falls under the Count ‘s control. Dracula said to Mina:
“ And you, their best beloved one, are now to me flesh of my flesh ; blood of my blood ; family of my kinaˆ¦ ”[ 11 ]( Dracula, 1897, p. 458 )
From the words proclaimed by Dracula, we can see how adult females were suppressed by work forces. All of their actions are being controlled and they can non make everything they want from their ain desires. It looks like they are born to be slaves for work forces, and this issue is brought upon by Stoker successfully. The same thing happened to the adult females in 19th century where at that clip, the Victorian adult females were non given any freedom of address yet to voice out all of their sentiments and suggestions. They could non even show to others how they were experiencing even though it was difficult for them being suppressed and dominated by the males. Even for married adult females, they still had to handle their hubbies as their Masterss. That was how the life was for the nineteenth century Victorian adult females.
At the terminal of the fresh Mina overcomes hardship – as she manages to acquire off from Dracula ‘s clasp on her. But she could non make this all by herself. In fact, the Count had rendered her about useless to the huntsmans. She had to be freed by the work forces ‘s actions. This is a really stereotyped point of view – that the “ demoiselle in hurt ” has to be rescued by the courageous work forces. Besides, Quincy Morris ‘ forfeit of his life is really symbolic. He gave up his life blindly, so that he could salvage Mina from her agony. The work forces in the novel all have a really sexist point of view on adult females by today ‘s criterions. As being mentioned in the novel ;
“ It is excessively great a strain for a adult female to bear ” .[ 12 ]( Dracula, 1897, p. 404 )
But by the criterions of the Victorian society, their point of views on adult females are really rather broad. They did, for the most portion, handle them as equal to themselves. This once more shows Stokers sympathy towards the adult females of the Victorian epoch.
Part 6: WOMEN ‘S DOMINANCE IN LOVE AND HOUSE MANAGEMENT
In the novel, there are non merely issues sing adult females being suppressed by work forces in the society. Stoker even includes the actions of work forces towards adult females whenever the adult females dominate work forces ‘s Black Marias. There are many cases when the domination of adult females is stated, or at least the different manner in which adult females are viewed is shown. From the novel, Mina herself says:
“ I suppose there is something in a adult female ‘s nature that makes a adult male free to interrupt down before her and show his feelings on the stamp or emotional side without experiencing it derogative to his manhood. ”[ 13 ]( Dracula, 1897, p. 366 )
“ No 1 but a adult female can assist a adult male when he is in problem of the heartaˆ¦ ”[ 14 ]
( Dracula, 1897, p. 368 )
These quotation marks, in many ways, show a adult females ‘s laterality over work forces. When a adult male is in love with a adult female, he tends to make anything for the interest of that miss. He would besides make anything to acquire the attending, to acquire the love from the individual he admires. This is the nature of work forces shown by Bram Stoker from his novel “ Dracula ” .
At the very terminal of the novel, Stoker indicates that Jonathan and Mina have a kid. This is a powerful symbol used by Stoker. It non merely shows that they have all returned back to their inactive topographic point in society one time their work of is done and the evil power has been outcast. It besides shows how Mina one time once more returns to her maternal function – the function of being a loving female parent and married woman. She was elevated to a place which is about above adult females, by Victorian criterions, in hardship, but one time this trouble has passed Mina is nil more than merely another female parent. This shows that all adult females do hold their duties in going female parents of their ain kids, and that function can merely be done by adult females, non work forces. Stoker has done good to demo adult females have large duty in playing their function as female parents. In 1861, Isabella Beeton had introduced the term the ‘Household General ‘ .[ 15 ]16The Household General ‘s duties are comparable to the Commander of an ground forces ‘s. This term is used to demo the function of the adult females at that clip. A adult female acts like the director of her house. She needs to do certain that she allocates adequate clip to her kids and besides for her hubby instead than holding clip for her ain ego. Apart from that, another responsibility of a Victorian adult female described by Beeton is that of being the “ sick-nurse ” who takes attention of sick household members. To be a good sick-nurse, a adult female needs to possess a good pique, A commiseration towards sick persons, compassionA for enduring and cleanliness which are all qualities a adult female should hold in the nineteenth century. A adult female in Victorian times was besides obliged to take attention of her parents if they were ill and ailment, even though it took over months and old ages. It would be considered as a large forfeit if a adult female could make that to her parents.
From the research done, we can see that the feminism issues in his novel “ Dracula ” are really related to the current state of affairs go oning to the Victorian adult females during his clip. Victorian adult females in 19th century were being suppressed in real-life state of affairs and the same thing was included by Stoker in his novel. Through the adult females characters in the novel, Mina Murray, Lucy Westenra and the three lamia ladies, we can conceive of the life of the adult females, on how they suffered by all of the favoritism and being manipulated by work forces. Their life is certain tough as they did non hold the opportunity to make everything they want as all of their actions were being controlled. Their life was like marionette ‘s – being controlled by the marionette maestro ; the work forces.
Therefore, it is concluded that “ Dracula ” can be read from feminist point of position and the issues brought by Bram Stoker do connote the life of the Victorian adult females during the nineteenth century. It is so a great chef-d’oeuvre done by one of the celebrated writers of all time, Bram Stoker.