Literature Meme- 2/10 Prose
Dracula, by Bram Stoker
"Welcome to my house. Come freely. Go safely; and leave something of the happiness you bring.”
Was there ever any doubt that I would pick Dracula for this meme? Though I’ve spoken about it at length many times before, I’ll do my best not to repeat myself here. What, then, can I say about it?
Should I speak of its characters, lovingly detailed in diaries and letters, so personal and human that their every tragedy, foible and struggle becomes that of the reader? Should I speak of the creeping dread as a journal records the crew of a ship getting picked off one by one, until all that remains is the corpse of the writer lashed to the ship’s wheel? Should I speak of the complex, progressive and yet sometimes confusing attitudes towards eroticism which have left critics arguing to this day? Should I speak of Count Dracula himself, whose aristocratic yet bestial form of vampirism has shaped the way the monster has forever afterwards been portrayed? Should I speak of how the book at once defies many of the conventions of the gothic novel (the maiden ruined forever, the wickedness of science) and is at the same time perhaps the genre’s greatest triumph?
Or should I leave those of you who still haven’t read this remarkable book to get to a library or Project Gutenberg and discover it yourselves? I think I’ll do that. Pleasant dreams!