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Novel Study Dracula Bram Stoker English Literature Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: English Literature
Wordcount: 1265 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Fear is manifested in an individual when they are unsure of the outcome of their actions. Fear is also an unpleasant, often strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger. Fear is when a stranger is doing something “out of the blue” or unexpectedly. Everyone has their own fears but no matter how you look at it we all overcome our fears eventually. In Bram Stoker’s Dracula the protagonist Jonathan Harker comes across many weird situations which put his life and his fiancé’s life in danger. In this novel it is evident that: Jonathan Harker fears Count Dracula, fears for his fiancée Mina, and fears for his life.

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For example in beginning of the story when Jonathan Harker is sent to do some legal work for a foreigner named Count Dracula he comes across his unique and massive castle. In this time spent at his castle he develops fear for Count Dracula and his inhuman activities. He spends some time searching for an exit but sadly he is left lost.

But my very feelings changed to repulsion and terror when I saw the whole man slowly emerge from the window, and begin to crawl down the castle wall over that dreadful abyss, face down, with his cloak spreading out around him like great wings.

(Jonathon, 29)

This quote shows his fear of the Count because he was faced with an unpleasant but strong feeling caused by the danger he feels he could be in. This quote is also the first time Jonathan Harker is scared of his client Dracula and starts his mission to escape. Another quote that shows Jonathan’s fear toward Dracula is when Dracula approaches Jonathan as he attending to a cut on his (Jonathan) chin. “As the Count leaned over me and his hands touched me… a horrible feeling of nausea came over me, which, do what I would, I could not conceal.” (Jonathon, 35) The reason why Jonathan is fearful at this moment is because he is come across a stranger that is unexpectedly touching him without his consent in a violent sort of way. In conclusion Jonathan Harker fears Count Dracula because he is shady character that comes “out of the blue”, and acts with somewhat of an inhuman personality.

Furthermore, Harker also fears for his fiancée Mina, as he realizes the Count has developed interest in her. There are many examples of this point but one main being is when he catches the Count reading Jonathan’s mails to his fiancé and finds a picture of Mina in his room. “I am all in a sea of wonders. I doubt. I fear. I think strange things, which I dare not confess to my own soul. God keep me, if only for the sake of those dear to me!”(Jonathon, 15) This quote is in reference to when Jonathan Harker is exploring the castle for a way. However he finds Dracula’s room with his letters which he asked the count to mail and Mina’s picture. After this moment Jonathan describes his fear in the quote above by saying: “which I dare not confess to my own soul. God keep me, if only for the sake of those dear to me!”(15) In this quote he shows that he is terrified of his findings and he doesn’t want tell his soul what he thinks the Count is up to. In the end of the quote he prays for “those dear to me!”(15) which is reference to his fiancée Mina. Another quote that shows his fear for Mina safety is after when he escapes Dracula’s castle and marries Mina. After they are settled and come back to London Jonathan is surprised to see Dracula in a much younger form.

He was very pale, and his eyes seemed bulging out as, half in terror and half in amazement, he gazed at a tall, thin man, with a beaky nose and black moustache and pointed beard… I had a good view of him. His face was not a good face; it was hard, and cruel, and sensual, and his big white teeth, that looked all the whiter because his lips were so red, were pointed like an animal’s.

(Jonathon, 147)

This is the quote when Jonathan sees the Count in London after escaping from his castle in the Carpathians. This quote doesn’t show fear for Mina directly but we can infer that Dracula has come back in a much younger form to get Mina, because of this Jonathan is fearful for Mina’s safety and soon after this event he falls extremely ill because of this fear. In conclusion, fear invoked within Jonathan because Dracula is showing interest in Mina and comes as far turning into a younger man and coming to London.

Finally fear is represented by Jonathans’ worry for his life. This focus of his fear has been brought up many times involving Count Dracula but also by other individuals. One excellent example of Harker’s fear for his own life is when he is roaming around the castle trying to find a way out but he fails and is encountered by three lady vampires.

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I was afraid to raise my eyelids, but looked out and saw perfectly under the lashes. The girl went on her knees, and bent over me, simply gloating. There was a deliberate voluptuousness which was both thrilling and repulsive, and as she arched her neck, she actually licked her lips like an animal. . . . Lower and lower went her head as the lips went below the range of my mouth and chin and seemed about to fasten on my throat. . . . I closed my eyes in a languorous ecstasy and waited-waited with beating heart.

(Jonathon, 32)

Here quote he is antagonized by the three vampire ladies and is attacked by them. This quote shows the fear Jonathan has because as I stated in the beginning that fear is “caused by anticipation or awareness of danger”. This situation is a great example of my statement. Jonathan is surrounded by those three vampires and since he was aware of the danger he is in that causes him to fear for himself. Another of example of Jonathan’s fear for himself is when he is walking alone through a dark alley he spots a dreadful creature he has never seen before.

There, on the glimmering seat, the silver light of the moon struck a half-reclining figure, snowy white… something dark stood behind the seat where the white figure shone, and bent over it. What it was, whether man or beast, I could not tell.

(Jonathon, 136)

This is the quote spoken when Jonathan encounters supposedly Dracula in the form of a werewolf to kill Jonathan so he can abduct Mina. Fear is shown when he is encountered with an inhuman being that is posing as an unexpected danger. He is also frightened that he is alone in a shady pathway with a creature out to get him. In conclusion, Jonathan Harker is confronted with many circumstances that cause him to fear for himself such as when he is attacked by the three lady vampires and when he is attacked by Dracula in werewolf form.

In summary, the novel Dracula contains many different themes. The most evident theme is fear. Fear is portrayed very differently throughout the book but is caused by more or less the same influences, which are: Fear is also an unpleasant often strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger. Fear is when a stranger is doing something “out of the blue” or unexpectedly. The protagonist, Jonathan Harker is faced with many different moments in the story which he had to burden for himself and other people. He had shown to fear Count Dracula, fear for his wife Mina, and fears for himself. As a result, fear plays a key role in the plot development of this novel, and the protagonist Jonathan Harker is challenged to overcome it.


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