In Dracula, the normal gender roles are reversed, and the traditional Victorian readers are treated with an epic novel that does give the women the power over men. Gender and sexuality have been changing gradually, and its role in the society has equally been changing. In a succinct way, the change in the gender roles combined with the use of gothic descriptions gives this novel a very powerful impact on various aspects in the society. Gender provides a crucial role in this book with Count Dracula being entangled in different incidences that give feminism an underhand.
The dynamics of sexuality and gender are important in the following in Dracula. First, gender dynamics in Dracula are used by women to gain some favours. A notable example is exhibited by Lucy. Before Lucy was transformed into a vampire by Count, she was a good woman who respected men (Stoker, 178). After her transformation to a vampire, she turns into a manipulative person with her beauty being the main bait that was used to lure men. Quincey Morris and Dr. Seward both view Lucy as very beautiful, and they were ready to do anything.
Quincy Morris describes how Lucy was beautiful and he could do anything to win her. “I could see in the moonlight her moist lips and beautiful face” (Stoker, 174). Lucy seeing that she was beautiful, she capitalized on this aspect to gain favours. It is seen that Lucy did not fulfil her mandate while still a normal human being and she decides to combine the gothic sexual aspects with her gender to fulfil her mission. Lucy ideally tries to use her powers to lure Arthur into the bed with an intention of feeding on him.
Arthur viewed Lucy as a very beautiful woman, and he was ready to do anything to make her happy (Stoker, 189). It is evident that Braham Stoker decided to use reverse roles to bring the aspect of sexuality and gender in a more understandable manner in this book. Lucy uses her beauty to gain several favors from men. While she is a beautiful woman that men desire, she capitalizes on this aspect to gain what she did not gain while still a human being. Dynamism in gender in this novel helps in equipping women with important skills that they use to gain whatever they need from men (Hughes, 58).
The societal oppression of the feminism gender is always rife. With women lacking the option to counter on so that they can reduce the oppression from men, they always decide to be submissive. In Dracula, dynamism in gender provides a new crop of women who are determined to use their beauty to limit any disrespect from men. Despite Luc specifically possessing a non-human body after the transformation, she manages to use her gender and her tantalizing sexual appearance to gain some favors from men such as food.
The societal requirements on gender are always based on the submission from the part of women, but the dynamism in this book helps in the emanation of a new role of women. Secondly, the dynamics of gender help to position a woman as a helper to men because she is, much more independent. Mina challenges the normal traditional roles reserved for women. Mina is portrayed by Braham Stoker as a total replica of the modern woman. Mina is economically stable, and she owns a typewriter (Stoker, 182).
Despite her being a woman, she also helps men out of difficult situations a perfect example being the help she offered to Dracula in London. Mina acted like a man in London, and it is her theatrics that finally led to the death of Dracula. The characteristics of Mina are a complete opposite of how traditional Victorian woman was supposed to be. A Victorian traditional woman was supposed to be always dependent on men, and her role was only limited to giving birth. Dracula states that “God made a good combination of her” (Stoker, 201).
Dynamism in gender presents a woman that is ready to partake many activities that are deemed for Men in Dracula. The author of the book vividly demonstrates how a changed woman is much more lethal. The societal needs are pegged on the development of a woman who is very knowledgeable and can compete with men. Braham Stoker therefore vividly describes how dynamism in gender makes a woman much more like a man. Ideally, sexuality and gender are used as instruments of oppression in Dracula.
As the novel progresses the roles of women become much more tied on the commands of men in the novel. The men as it is always expected in the society provide commands that are viewed as largely oppressive to women. In Dracula, it is seen that male characters are protective of the women counterparts with closer examples being Lucy Westenra and Mina Harker. Both Lucy and Mina seem to be protected, but it is in a chivalrous way that seems to put their male counterparts in an advantageous position. Male dominance in shown by Count Dracula who has a misogynist view towards women.
Dracula states that”I am alone in these castle with the awful women” (Stoker, 167) Even though Count Dracula does not show openly that he hates women his actions clearly depict this aspect. In the castle, the three sisters are presented with instructions that require them to follow all the instructions that are presented by Dracula. While talking to Helsing, Count states that Lucy and Mina are under his command and he can do whatever he wishes with them. Ideally, Dracula engages in Victorian male imagination aspects.
Female sexuality is a factor that is used to depict how women moved away from their earlier historical roles to newer roles. A Victorian woman was expected to be two things in the society; she was either a virgin or a wife. If a woman was neither a wife nor a virgin, she was deemed as a prostitute. Braham Stoker draws closer the notion that women are either agent of light or the dark. When Dracula arrived in England, he takes in Lucy Westenra and starts his evil magic on her. Buoyed by the chastity and purity of both Lucy and Mina, Dracula is not convinced of their roles as women.
To Dracula, the women’s role was mostly to satisfy the sexual desires of men. Dracula eventually manages to convert Lucy to a whore, a state that depicts the role of the women in the dynamic society. However, Helsing is not convinced with the role that Lucy plays in satisfying men desires, and therefore he orders the destruction of Lucy to make her purer. The culmination of events in this part vividly describes how gender roles were divided. Late in the book, Dracula tells Helsing’s men that he has already taken all their women.
From the struggle over Lucy and Mina by both Dracula and Helsing represents the two sides of how gender is important while dealing with the aspects of sexuality. It is important to note that the struggle between Dracula and Van Helsing is based on how they both view women (Hughes, 58). While Dracula is focused on making Lucy and Mina raving vampire vixens, Helsing is determined to make them purer. A woman is viewed as an object that can be transformed in many forms to make men happy. In conclusion, dynamism in Dracula makes both gender and sexuality to be very powerful tools upon which women use to gain independence from men.
Traditional Victorian aspects are entirely reversed by Braham Stoker as women are much more powerful in this novel because of dynamism in gender and sexuality. From Mina who helps Dracula in London to Lucy who effectively uses her beauty and perfect sexual appearance to devour on men. The traditional roles of both sexes are reversed in Dracula. A woman in Dracula is much more powerful, knowledgeable and ruthless. Despite the use of Gothic aspects, Braham Stoker manages to present Dracula as a novel that effectively portrays women as much more powerful as men due to the dynamism in aspects like sexuality.