Essay on Dracula and Mina

Submitted By njerimuiru
Words: 865
Pages: 4

Njeri Muiru
British Literature Period 2
April 20, 2015

The New Woman in
The typical description of a woman has drastically changed from what is was decades ago. The transition from the man having the major role and the women underlaying in the background to her having a more distinct role in the story. The different depictions of the woman in different decades also has to do with how they are seen. If they are not the typical woman, they are looked down upon by the men. This transition to a "new woman" is seen in Bram Stoker's famous, Dracula. The two female characters, Mina and Lucy, are both representative of the "old" and "new woman" respectively in by showing two different personalities. Throughout the story, Mina is seen as a pure, perfect Victorian woman and wife. During the months Jonathan was away trapped at the Castle of Dracula, Mina always remained faithful. She had an abundance of opportunities to become unfaithful and find another man but she decides instead to worry and try help Jonathan: "No news from Jonathan. I am getting quite uneasy about him…" (Chapter 6). Here you can see how she worries about Jonathon as she waits for his return which also goes to show how faithful she remains. The perfect wife of the time would be considered someone who can be trusted to stay loyal and await the return of the man whether it be from war, or even a castle. To carry out the purity of her role, Mina is not seen as a sexual woman compared to Lucy. Lucy seems to bring in men by being physically attractive over everything else. There is an emphasis on how beautiful she is: "Lucy met me at the station, looking sweeter and lovlier than ever..."(Chapter 6). Lucy's beauty is talked of much more than that of Mina which, again, shows how pure she is depicted. Her interest in technology and new methods goes to show how Mina is an image of the "new woman". Typically in the time of the story, men are the ones who give interest in new technology instead of the women who usually stay at home and orry more about the homes. Althoug, Mina finds ways to help Jonathan using her intelligance: "I have been working very hard lately, because I want to keep up with Jonathan's studies, and I have been practicing shorthand very assiduously. When we are married I shall be able to be useful to Jonathan..."(Chapter 5). Mina decides to learn shorthand so she will be able to be more usefull to Jonathan. This shows why Mina plays a bigger role in the story. "...While this is one way of viewing Mina’s “new woman” characterization, the way it is depicted most throughout the novel is through her intelligence regarding modern technologies..."(Robert Humphrey). Unlike Lucy, she helps the group of men and is important to the defeat of Dracula: "And it has become a habit for Van Helsing to hypnotize her at such times."(Chapter 25). Mina's conection with Dracula gave the team what they needed to track Dracula and follow him. This also shows the role of the "new woman" to help and be involved in the work of the men. As the story progresses, Mina's purity gives her the strength to fight and reject Dracula's powers wheras Lucy was easily taken over by his powers. By essentially giving