• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Science Versus Superstition in Dracula and Victoria England

Extracts from this document...


Rebekah Baer 2813 Final Paper 30 July 2010 Science Versus Superstition in "Dracula" and Victoria England During the Victorian Era in Britain, British citizens began to explore the east and became fascinated with it. There was a great interest in the orient and the objects and culture that came from it. Although the people were mystified by the superstitious nature of the orient learned from their eastern excursions, they were afraid of the east being able to travel to the west. Although the British consumed eastern culture, they were still afraid of too much infiltration by the east. They didn't want their pure British culture to be tainted. Because of this, they used science to explain, classify, and control the unknown superstitious nature of the orient. This push of science onto the eastern world is seen in several scenes throughout the novel Dracula, which was written by Bram Stoker during the Victorian Era in Britain. The proper British characters are constantly trying to overcome Dracula with science. British Imperialism and the British Empire's attitude towards the east are shown through the relationship through science and superstition in Dracula. While traveling east, the British encountered a lot of new and previously unknown commodities, cultures, and people. ...read more.


British homes were filled with oriental rugs, vases, even hookahs. Teas, spices, and sugar became a part of everyday life. Even the most proper of gentlemen had their heirlooms and smoked their hookah pipes. Exotic animals were brought back along with exotic garb, plants, and customs. Oriental culture became intertwined with British culture. The two became inseparable. For a people who were so scared of letting eastern culture tarnish their proper ways, they sure welcomes the consumption of it with open arms. Although there was a large consumption of Eastern culture, the British still remained weary of their properness. They wanted their foreign treasures to be exotic, but still fit into the conservative structure of British society. There was a push and pull of oriental culture. The British were fascinated by the newness and wanted to immerse themselves, but still keep it distant enough to retain their Victorian pureness. In the same way that the British were interested in eastern culture, the characters in Dracula were unwillingly drawn to the mystery of the oriental Dracula. The power that Dracula had over the characters is reminiscent of the way that eastern culture had a powerful draw for the Victorian British. ...read more.


Just as the British people's use of science and reason failed to keep the east out and they had to succumb to the permeation of eastern culture and accept it into their culture, the characters in "Dracula" have to accept the superstition into their lives and trust that it will be more beneficial than the previous use of science and reason. The oriental culture had made its way into British culture, seeped in, and shaken up proper Victorian society. Much like the failure to keep away Dracula, no matter how hard the British tried to keep oriental culture out, the ways of the east breached England's shores. The order in British society was mimicked in the order of their science. Trying to solve eastern superstitions with science is similar to trying to impose order on the world to retain the comfortable, pure order of proper Britain. The characters in Stoker's "Dracula" are constantly trying to control Dracula with science and constantly failing. They eventually have to resort to superstition. This mirrors the effect of eastern culture on British society. As much as Britain tried to contain the orient with science, the orient penetrated proper Britain and seeped into British culture, where it still remains today. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Other Authors section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree Other Authors essays

  1. In what ways, and to what extent, does Mrs Dalloway illustrate Woolfs intention to ...

    But by using her idea to pen a story in the abstract, she managed to create such a depth of emotion when writing about Septimus, even though she still wrote without the drama. Woolf wrote about families left without son's and father's as an everyday event, and it is so

  2. Madness need not be all break-down. It may also be break-through. It is potential ...

    and lack of choice knowing that she can only choose one path, and once that path has been chosen the others are no longer available, nevertheless she wants them all! She does not find the idea of childbirth appealing or fulfilling in any way and Plath offers ample negative images throughout.

  1. Great Expectations. The main character I will explore in this essay is the central ...

    However, although the reader will also make a moral judgement about Miss Havisham's deceitfulness towards Pip, as she leads him to believe she is the source of his wealth, the reader's view later changes. The repetition of her crying out 'what have I done!', 'what have I done' (p.394)

  2. 'The story I am telling is all imagination. These characters I create never existed ...

    It is in just this way that we cannot tell where Charles will end: indeed, even Fowles seems not to know, hence his triple ending. This too, could present a barrier for his readership: if Fowles, as the author and creator of the text, cannot discern the direction of a

  1. Turn of the Screw Response Paper

    He did what he wished," as Mrs. Grose described the affair (152). As the story is slowly unfolded to the narrator by Mrs. Grose, it turns out that Miss Jessel died mysterious while on leave and Quint likewise speciously found dead on the side road.

  2. Assess the extent to which Great Expectations is a realist novel

    Inside the house all the clocks are stopped at the same time, ?twenty minutes to nine? creating the image of a world suspended in time, which strongly contradicts the idea of the realist novel. As well as the inherent gothic sub-genre of Great Expectations it could also be argued that the novel contains elements of the romance genre.

  1. Comparing Julian Barnes A History of the World in 10 Chapters to Elisabeth ...

    About postmodernism, the last word has not yet been spoken. Ever since the term was first used in the 1930?s, and was more frequently used in the 1950?s and 60?s and from then on, critics have struggled with defining it.

  2. Sorting, Longing, Seeing and Saving: An Analysis of Magical Devices in Harry Potter ...

    The houses are also microchasms of the divisions and alliances in the Wizarding World. More important than this, however, is how Harry?s sorting is crucial to his character. The hat, when placed on his head, is able to read Harry?s thoughts and converse with him, and initially wishes to place Harry in Slytherin.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work