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GCSE: Bram Stoker

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  1. 'No reader of 'The Woman in Black', can be left in doubt about its conscious evocation of the Gothic

    In Britain this revival involved a series of attempts to 'return to roots', in contrast to the classical model revered in the earlier eighteenth century. It is believed that the very first Gothic novel was invented solely by Horace Walpole, when he wrote 'The Castle of Otranto' in 1764. This novel was imitated throughout the following centuries because it contains essentially all the elements that comprise the Gothic genre. It is also believed to have influenced writing, poetry and film making to the present day.

    • Word count: 1362
  2. The term 'gothic' was originally used to describe both type of Art and Architecture. Gothic novels were given a genre of their own primarily because of their emotional extremes and their dark themes

    The term 'gothic' was originally used to describe both type of Art and Architecture. Gothic novels were given a genre of their own primarily because of their emotional extremes and their dark themes and because it's most natural settings were things like castles and monasteries which were part of the typical gothic architecture. Some of the first gothic novels included 'The Castle of Otranto' and 'Byronic Hero'.

    • Word count: 304
  3. Within "Young Goodman Brown", a story composed by Nathaniel Hawthorne, conveys

    The Gothic is often criticized or even dismissed for its overly melodramatic scenarios and utterly predictable plots..." {Davis Pg1}. Within "Young Goodman Brown", a story composed by Nathaniel Hawthorne, conveys the tale of a man drawn into a treaty with the Devil. Once being lured into a covenant with the Devil, Young Goodman Brown subsequently discovers his loved ones and faithful patrons in his town are going to attend an evil witch-like ceremony, also known as The Black Mass. A few of the main components in "Young Goodman Brown" include allegory, symbolism, and themes.

    • Word count: 729
  4. Discuss the plot in Bram Stokers Dracula.

    And after reading the message she lunged herself into the river thinking that there is no point in living with your love. As Dracula returns from the battlefield unknowing that his wife has committed suicide for false reasons he shocked and then over whelmed by rage. With this rage flowing through him he shout out that he renounces God and will revenge or bring back Elizabeta with the powers of darkness. He then stabs the cross of Christ with his bloodstained sword.

    • Word count: 918
  5. Vlad III Tepes Dracula (1431-1476): Romanian Freedom Fighter or Cold-Blooded Impaler?

    Towards the end of the 15th century the House of Basarab had split into two bitter clans. Descendants of Prince Dan formed the Danesti while Dracula and his father, Vlad II Dracul, were ancestors of Prince Mircea the Old. The Wallachians were accustomed to be influenced by powerful neighbours. The fall of the Byzantine Empire in 1453, which had defended Europe from Islamic access for nearly one thousand years, fell to the Ottoman Turkish Empire under the leadership of Sultan Mohammed the Conqueror. Prior to the fall of Constantinople, Mircea the Old was forced to acknowledge the sultan's presence in the early fifteen century.

    • Word count: 1654
  6. Monster/Vampire movies are concerned with sexual transgression,

    (Dyer, 10) Perhaps if we are to enter the vampires castle of subtext, the front door would be clearly be marked Bram Stokers Dracula (Francis Ford Coppola; US, 1992), for which Richard Dyer pays close attention too. This fascinating look at the vampire leads into the notion that Dracula represents the more vile side of male sexuality; that Dracula acts as an antithesis to how society resides in sacraments of marriage, moral order and structure. "He is an outsider, without being socially marginal," (Dyer, 10).

    • Word count: 2445
  7. Bram Stoker's Dracula

    These conventions are essential in the story of Dracula and it is important to understand them. Dracula, just like any other gothic piece of writing has a villain/vampire-Dracula, a hero-Jonathan Harker and a victim-Mina. Van Helsing also plays a main role as the slayer of Dracula. Chapter 1, like a lot of the other chapters is written in journal style. This journal is of the main character Jonathan Harker, a young English solicitor, who is travelling across Europe to Transylvania in order to meet Count Dracula. The journal is of everything that is happening Transylvania, which he gives to Mina, his fianc´┐Że to show their marital trust.

    • Word count: 2407
  8. In this essay I will be looking at how successful Oscar Wilde was at creating a gothic novel. I will be using Edgar Alan Poe's short story 'The Fall of the House of Usher' and the film 'Bram Stokers, Dracula' and the

    When Oscar Wilde wrote 'The Picture of Dorian Gray' in 1891 the gothic phase was coming to an end but Oscar Wilde still managed to cause uproar when it was published. I shall now be looking at the novel its self and certain gothic passages in the novel with reference to Edgar Alan Poe's 'The Fall of the House of Usher'. The story is about a young man in his early twenties and how he sells his soul to the devil for eternal youth and beauty.

    • Word count: 1490
  9. How does Bram Stoker use gothic conventions to create an atmosphere of suspense and fear for the reader?

    Throughout the story, Bram Stoker uses Dracula's abilities, actions and appearance to create suspense for the reader. The novel opens with an extract from Jonathan Harker's journal relating to his journey. In the journal Jonathan Harker expresses his feelings; these include his worries and fears as he travels to Castle Dracula. Bram Stoker uses strange customs and sights to generate anxiety in Jonathan Harker's journal to the reader. 'I did not sleep well, though my bed was comfortable enough, for I had all sorts of queer dreams', this creates fear to the reader because it explains there was weird existence during the sleep because it caused discomfort that was not visible.

    • Word count: 938
  10. During the late 19th Century women's views and ideals were radically attempting to overpower the patriarchal system. How are these changing ideals portrayed in Stoker's 'Dracula'?

    The novel also raises the issue of patriarchy, which was very apparent during the 1800's. The decline of patriarchy in the novel coincides with the feminist uprising during the 1890's, 'Under exclusively man-made laws women have been reduced to the most abject condition of legal slavery in which it is possible for human beings to be held...under the arbitrary domination of another's will, and dependent for decent treatment exclusively on the goodness of heart of the individual master.' (Florence Fenwick Miller) The female need for independence and freedom from their oppression drove the male hierarchy to do everything it could to quash these ideals, 'Signs of rebellion were swiftly crushed by fathers, husbands, even brothers.

    • Word count: 983
  11. Compare The Kit-bag and The Judge's Houseas Short Stories in the Gothic Horror Tradition.

    Gothic horror is also a form of statues, which represent a more terrifying look in a very distinctive style. I will be comparing two stories The Kit-Bag and The Judges House. The author of the horrifying tale of The Judges House was the magnificent Bram Stoker and the author of The Kit-Bag was Algeron Blackwood. The Judges House is about a student, Malcolm Malcomson, wanting to get away from the pressures of every day life. While Malcolm was wandering about looking for accommodation, he finds this peculiar looking house with the cleaner working inside. After renting the strange house he got down to studying.

    • Word count: 2076
  12. How does the writer create an atmosphere of fear and horror in the opening chapters of Dracula?

    The night before he had "had all sorts of queer dreams" of a dog howling. This is a disturbing dream and relates to the howling of dogs and wolves later on in the novel when the wolves are circling the carriage with "lolling red tongues", this depicts danger and is emphasised when a "paralysis of fear" over comes Jonathan. His suspicions are aroused again as when he is setting off from his hotel. All the guests gathered outside guard him "against the evil eye". Jonathan is unnerved as it is "not very pleasant" and this isn't helped with, again, a "blessing" against the evil eye.

    • Word count: 1206
  13. How does the writer create an atmosphere of fear and horror in the opening chapter of Dracula?

    This hints to the reader that Harker is subconsciously worried and creates even more anxiety. Strange dreams or visions are typical in Gothic horror stories, and disturbing dreams and visions may be seen as a sign to the reader, that he is having premonitions. When Harker arrives at Bistritz, he describes it as a "very interesting old place". The words "old" and "interesting" suggests the place seems to have history, or some sort of mysterious or spooky feeling about it.

    • Word count: 2485
  14. Discuss the ways the filmmakers have presented the story Dracula.

    The subtitles make the film easier to understand for the audience, it also helps the film develop. Music was an important aspect in both films. However both directors have chosen to interpret and introduce the story of 'Dracula' in different ways. In 'Bram Stoker's Dracula' Coppola begins the story in Transylvania during 1462, but in 'Nosferatu' the story begins later in Bremen, Germany during 1838. Coppola begins the story so early because it links with the historical points that Bram Stoker based his novel on.

    • Word count: 2893
  15. Gothic Horror Stories

    'The Signalman' written by Charles Dickens who lived from 1812 to 1870.The story is about a signalman who sees a ghost and every time he sees it, the ghost shows something in the future which is going to happen. The signalman tells a passing man about this incident, the man and him become friends. Then the signalman sees his own death without knowing, he tells the man about this, they think of a rational reason for this but however the signalman dies.

    • Word count: 2488
  16. Discuss Austen's use of the gothic in Northanger Abbey

    She learns to tell who is her true friend, the meaning of true love, and how to distinguish reality from fantasy. A perhaps over simplified way of explaining and helping with the understanding of the novel is done by critics who argue that the novel's coherency can be broken down into roughly two categories: "coherency through use of genre and modes (technical and intertextual concerns) and thematic coherency"2 The novels which Catherine reads during the first section of 'Northanger Abbey' were especially popular amongst women in the eighteenth century.

    • Word count: 1209
  17. How does Bram Stoker use Gothic conventions to create an atmosphere of suspense and fear for the reader?

    Gothic fiction traditionally includes elements such as gloomy castles, sublime landscapes, and innocent maidens threatened by indescribable evil. From background knowledge of Abraham Stoker we know that he was the third of seven children, and he was violently ill as a child. When he was sick, Stoker read many books and listened to the horror tales his mother told him. These led Stoker to start writing ghost stories, even as a child. This explains why he must have chosen this particular genre of novels. The book starts off as a first person narrative form the character Jonathan Harker who is sent by a businessman to meet with an old Count named Dracula at his castle located far from civilization.

    • Word count: 1745
  18. On the basis of a discussion of one or two passages explain why you think Stoker included Quincy Morris and Van Helsing in the Crew of Light.

    Lucy Westernera, a friend and suitor to Quincy, writes the letter. The second passage, pp.93-4, is a letter written about Van Helsing from his friend and former student, Dr Seward. Both these passages give us insights as to the character of the two men. Whilst being an important member of the Crew of Light, Quincy Morris is also perceived as being non-threatening as a foreigner in the Crew of Light. Lucy knows little of Quincy's background and this would seem to breed a slight element of disrespect for him. This is illustrated where Lucy says: "It amused me to hear him talk American slang."

    • Word count: 2055
  19. Consider how the theme of light and darkness is used to good effect in 'Dracula'. Consider the use of language and imagery, how this theme relates to other themes within the novel.

    In Dracula there are good characters and evil characters but you could also argue that certain ones are neither and stuck between both extremes, this is another way that shows stoker prospect of not agreeing with extremes. Firstly there is an obvious element which is present of life VS death within the novel, this contrast is shown through the characters, language and imagery. Light and Dark is shown through life Vs death and day VS night. One point contained in the novel that suggests a contrast between the two extremes is that it is only during the night, when supernatural, strange things occur in contrast to daytime when nothing seems to go wrong.

    • Word count: 702
  20. The Biblical Archetypes in The Stone Angel: A Comparison Between the Bible and The Stone Angel

    In the meantime, Hagar, like her archetype, plays the role of "the dutiful wife." She engages in sexual activity with Bram even though she does not want to. As a result, she bears a son, Marvin, whom she never really loves or cares for. In addition, Hagar, having been a part of the Manawakan elite, is bound to their unwritten codes of conduct and values the same way that the Biblical Hagar is bound, by law, to Abram and Sarah. In order to elude additional persecution, both Hagars have to conform to the laws of their respective cultures and time periods.

    • Word count: 1364
  21. Gothic Subculture - Sinister or Harmless?

    Such attitude easily leads to intolerance, resentment and loss of communication between general society and the subculture, hiding the real truths of alive people behind the stereotypical fiction. Among many stereotypes related to Goths, one of the most common ones is obsession with death. The commonly held view is that they are antisocial outcasts attempting suicide or desiring to kill someone else. In reality, Goths' fascination with everything related to death is not as superficial as it appears at first sight.

    • Word count: 1470
  22. In what ways does Stoker set the scene and establish the atmosphere in the opening pages of Dracula?

    It was where paganism met Christianity and where the boundaries of the known and the unknown merged. The theme of the unknown is native to gothic writing, this is why the setting of Transylvania is ideal for a gothic novel. Stoker further emphasises the crossing of West to East by using the bridge over the Danube as a metaphor "the most splendid bridges over the Danube, which is here of noble width and depth, took us among the traditions of Turkish rule". Stoker uses personification when describing the bridge as noble, Harker views the bridge as noble because it is the last piece of Victorian 'civilization' he would see for a while.

    • Word count: 598
  23. Review the film

    Most horror films have a similar storyline. They are usually set in an isolated place with a gothic setting and most of the scary parts take place at night. The main characters usually consist of the monster or 'baddie', who may be a murderer and is not easily destroyed, which is handy for sequels. A clever person or maybe a scientist, 'stupid' people that often go off on their own and is more likely to get killed first, and a beautiful women who screams a lot and may get injured, or even killed for dramatic purposes.

    • Word count: 1362
  24. Comparison of Short Stories - The Tell Tale Heart, Dracula, and The Woman In Black.

    "...but why WILL you say that I am mad?" As the narrator is telling the story it sounds as if he is thrilled about what he is going to do and after he has murdered the old man he is delighted and triumphant. "...for what had I now to fear?" I think it is more frightening for a murderer to behave carefully because he has thought about, how he's going to do it, where he's going to do it, what he'll do with the body afterwards and other details along these lines.

    • Word count: 1031
  25. Exam Stoker's presentation of women in Dracula.

    When Lucy is bitten, she finds it hard to sleep, and becomes restless in the nights as Mina observes. Lucy begins to sleepwalk, and it is made clear that the "Bloofer Lady", who has become know among the children she is feeding off , as her new cravings need to be satisfied. Where the mystery lies though is how Dracula became to bite her, when there was no one at the house in Whitby to welcome him. This suggests some sort of co-operation with Dracula, whereas Mina does not have this luxury since Renfield welcomes him, and later confesses.

    • Word count: 1035

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