Dracula: We Can’t Stop Here, Jon

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I’m not too far into my reread of Dracula, but I wanted to point out a couple of things to pay attention to before we get too far.

It’s been a while since I’ve read Dracula, and I always remember Mina more than anyone (because, obviously, Mina). But I was amused to seet the first mention of her in one of Jonathan’s little memos: “Mem. get recipe for Mina” (Stoker 5).

That’s right, I guess we have to hang out with our good friend Jon for a while, don’t we? Oh well. It’s okay, because we can entertain ourselves with memos!

“Mem. I must ask the Count all about them” (6). Good luck with that, Jon.

“Mem. I must ask the Count about these superstitions” (11). Jon, no. Jon. JON.

All I’m saying is, if Jon had asked Mina about superstitions and the Count about recipes, things might have Turned Out Differently. Keep an eye out for more memos.

Another thing to look out for: possible disguises. On this reread I’m wondering, is the barking dog under Jonathan’s window secretly Dracula??? Why else is the barking dog even mentioned, when dear Jon hasn’t even made it anywhere near to Castle Dracula yet? PONDER PONDER.

Third thing: TECHNOLOGY. One of my favorite things about this book is the mix of Gothic horror with cutting-edge Victorian tech. Conan Doyle’s Holmes stories do the same thing, only in the mystery genre. So far I’ve only come across Jonathan’s Kodak  camera (what a cool dude) but I know there’s plenty more to come.

Fourth and last thing that is sorta tied to thing three: Dracula starts out as a travelogue, narrated by our foreign correspondent Jonathan.Stay alert for the racial stereotypes but also pay attention to when the genre shifts, and how it does so.

 

COMING UP NEXT: On Monday I’ll talk about dear old Jon and his narration, as well as look at the Count in some more detail.

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