Dangerous Desire

What do Lucy and the Vampire women have in common? Desire. Nowhere is it more clear than when Lucy is about to die or the ladies attempt to drink Johnathan’s blood. What makes them monsters to the Victorian age is that these women control their own sexuality and express their own desire. As Lucy lays dying, she speaks in “a soft, voluptuous voice, such as [Seward] had never heard from her lips” (Stoker, 172). Up until this point this was “never heard from her.” She was not a monster and then immediately when she has begun to become a vampire, she starts expressing her desire and attempts to leverage it to get what she wants, saying “Arthur! Oh, my love, I am so glad you have come! Kiss Me!” (Stoker, 172). She openly tells him what she wants from him before the world, w hen even Mina and Johnathan, married, holding hands in public is considered in bad form, she tries to get him to kiss her before an audience. Her tone as “soft” and “voluptuous” implies a sensuality which is then seemed to be almost irresistible to Arthur. Similarly, it may be this feeling that women who express their desire are irresistible that is what makes them so scary to Victorian men. As “Arthur bent eagerly over to kiss her” just as Johnathan when faced with the vampire women, “Felt in [his] heart a wicked, burning desire that they would kiss [him] with those red lips” (Stoker, 45). In both cases the men desire and are depicted as powerless against the women, because of their own “desire” or eagerness. Johnathan even describes his own desire as “wicked”, showing how desire is viewed as bad, and it almost seems as though the typical expected outcome is for women to be the one to deny desire. Therefore, it is seen as monstrous when they do not, as the men seem incapable of it. In fact, the parallels between Dracula and Van Helsing are quite strong. Both grab the one attempting by the neck. Both with previously unimaginable fury for the individual witnessing and both hurl the offender across the room. Almost as though the only thing that can stop those enthralled and giving into desire is violence.

2 thoughts on “Dangerous Desire”

  1. I agree with you that as Lucy turns into a vampire she uses her desire to real her husband and others in. What I also came across reading this blog post is that vampires have a heightened desire because of how powerful their emotions are. Maybe Lucy has so much desire because of that high emotion she is having forming into a vampire. I also liked how you brought up when she talks in her desirable manner that she uses a soft voice to relate it back to her innocence. She wants to show she is still pure but others do not lure into her sensation of getting what she wants.

  2. There is definitely a connection between vampires and sexuality. Particularly for Lucy and the women, we see them portrayed as wanton evil Things who are only out to lure in and harm the good men of British society. I believe that we see these different power dynamics and negative connotations surrounding all of the women because they are going against the very grain of society and challenging gender norms. Men don’t want to lose their power, but if women know how to wield their own, they might take the opportunity to join together and fight for their rights.

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