I don’t think I will be reading Dracula again for a while. It was a bit dry for me. I think that since our culture has changed a lot since it was published in 1897 it no longer has the same impact as it did when it first came out. It no longer shows our fears of the supernatural. Perhaps if Dracula was an AI that was somehow able to infect people with some kind of virus that somehow paralleled the same story as Dracula.
If Dracula was a book released today with no changes from when it was published in 1897 but released in 2015 instead of 1897 I don’t think that it would be a very popular book. The book would not be very relevant today. It wouldn’t reflect our culture. Superstition is not as big as it was back then. Science is now one of the ore popular ways to view the world. Also the culture has changed significantly since that time. Things like the “New woman” is more of a thing now.
In Dracula the story would seem off because they are stereotype Victorians. If you swapped the genders of the characters the story would seem a bit more absurd then it already is. But it would make for an interesting story. Van Helsing would be a very wise intelligent old woman and Dr. Seward would be more or less the same.
In chapter 14 Johnathan is getting better. To understand what happened Mina reads Johnathan’s journal. Later Dr. Van Helsing visits Mina to talk about Lucy. Then to understand what happened to Lucy, Dr. Van Helsing reads Mina’s journal and she gives him Johnathan’s journal to read. After reading Johnathan’s journal Van Helsing says that it is true. While walking with Mina Johnathan sees the count and he appears younger, and Renfield is as sane as ever. Arthur is getting better since Lucy’s death. But mysteriously children are being lured away and returning with puncture wounds on their necks. Dr Van Helsing wants Dr Seward to believe things he says. Dr Van Helsing also proposes that these puncture marks are from Miss Lucy.
One detail that Bram Stoker implements in the book Dracula is the mirror. Generally mirrors are thought to reflect the person. Whether it be their appearance, their emotions, their alternate personalities (Golem speaking to his reflection in the water in lord of the rings), or their souls (the portrait of Dorian grey in the picture of Dorian grey). The mirror is mentioned multiple times in the book.
Jonathon notices that he cannot see Dracula in the reflection of his shaving mirror.
“I turned to the glass again to see how I had been mistaken. This time there could be no error, for the man was close to me, and I could see him over my shoulder. But there was no reflection of him in the mirror! The whole room behind me was dis-played, but there was no sign of a man in it, except myself.” (Page 38)
This could be showing different things. It could be that (as in the picture of Dorian Grey) the absence of a reflection of Dracula shows the absence of a soul, that he is not human. That if he had any humanity before, he no longer possesses it. Maybe it is because a mirror can reflect actions or allows us to reflect on our actions. Without a reflection maybe the author is telling us that count Dracula is unable to reflect on his actions.
“I saw something like them in Hampton Court, but they were worn and frayed and moth-eaten. But still in none of the rooms is there a mirror.” (Page 29)
Typically in a house there would be many mirrors especially in a place such as castle Dracula with its size. Bram Stoker specifically points out to us that Castle Dracula does not contain any mirrors. This is perhaps because the Count does not want to be reminded of his loss of humanity or soul.