Quincey’s Last Yeehaw

Jonathan Harker’s note at the end of Dracula encapsulates British Victorian anxieties regarding “good” versus “bad” immigrants. In his note, Jonathan muses over the aftermath of the demise of Dracula– the representation of the “bad” immigrant that Victorians feared. Jonathan uses most of his short note to focus heavily on the death of Quincey, a foreigner from America, and ends his writing with the thoughts of Van Helsing, a Dutch doctor (Stoker 402). Both Quincey and Van Helsing represent the idea of the “good” immigrant in Victorian England.

At no point in the novel were Quincey and Van Helsing considered to be bad immigrants or foreigners, but they are clearly portrayed as odd and out of place throughout the story. The other characters tend to note Quincey and Van Helsing’s strange accents and behaviors, such as Quincey’s stereotypical American enthusiasm for guns and overly Texan turns of phrase. So, while Quincey and Van Helsing were both accepted by the English characters in the novel, it was still made obvious that they did not truly belong amongst the British.

In Jonathans note, it is clear that the “unbelonging” of Quincey and Van Helsing has shifted after Count Dracula’s death. In giving up his life to defeat Dracula and save Mina, Quincey has cemented himself as someone who can truly belong in England. By sacrificing himself, Quincey demonstrated that he was dedicated to Jonathan, Mina, and the rest of the Englishmen in Dracula and, therefore, showed that he was truly loyal to England. Although Van Helsing did not give up his life to defeat his vampire foe, he put his life on the line multiple times throughout the story, and his knowledge and expertise were some of the main reasons why their mission was a success. Because of his continuous demonstrations of loyalty to the English characters around him (especially Mina), Van Helsing solidified himself as a “good” immigrant by showing that he would not betray England or its people.

The dichotomy between “good” and “bad” immigrants is so strongly depicted in Jonathan’s note because it shows the triumph felt by the “little band of men” upon their final defeat of the “bad” immigrant that plagued them (Stoker 402). The naming of Mina and Jonathan’s son after Quincey, too, shows how Quincey has almost been reincarnated as a “true” Englishman by sacrificing his life for Mina. Now, the spirit of the “good” immigrants (Quincey and Van Helsing) can live on within a “true” British person.

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