Whitby as a Character: The Architecture of Bram Stoker’s Dracula

Introduction

In all forms of writing, the author is primarily focused on bringing in an impact into the minds of the reader. The Dracula is not an exception of this. This is a Gothic horror novel written in 1897 by Irish author by name Bram Stoker. The intentions of Bram Stoker in writing this novel may be or not similar to the way readers perceive it after reading through the work. The novel acts as a bridge linking the author and the large numbers of people who read the novel.

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This is very evident in the way the author through an explanation of the path followed by Mina makes readers understand the town as if they were there during the time when Bram Stoker was writing the book. For a reader who has never been to whitby, a picture of the town is created in his/her own mind after reading the novel. The name used in the novel creates in the mind of a reader vision of crucifixes, garlic, stakes and vampires.

The topic of the novel prepares a reader psychologically giving him/her a hint of the information he/she will find in the novel. The information given in the novel helps a reader understand the way people perceived things during the time when this novel was composed. The relationship created in the novel is comparable to the one existing between an architect, the building and the user of that building.

In the case of the Dracula, the story has been used to create a connection between the author and the reader of the story. Similarly, the building is being used to link up the user and the architect who planned the building. According to Hugh Pearman, all architecture is a narrative. The only difference is that different architects use different styles in telling their stories.

The whole story of Dracula is a fiction. This is a story which was created in the mind of Bram Stoker from where he builds up the play and his fictional characters. The story takes us to a fictional world were vampires exist. According to the story, a vampire is depicted as a creature that relies on the blood of a human being for it to live. For a reader who has never been to Whitby, the description of places given in the novel sounds as a fiction to him/her.

The author explains to us that “his Dracula” had been “un-dead” for hundreds of years. All through the novel, the author brings in various instances in which certain supernatural capabilities of the Dracula have been brought. The most significant super natural capability is its ability to appear and disappear at given situations. This creates in the mind of a reader of a world in which human beings are being threatened by creatures with supernatural capabilities.

Stories on creatures with supernatural capabilities were in circulation during the time when Brm Stoker decided to compose his novel “Dracula”. Count Dracula, the fictional character was inspired by Vlad Dracula, one of the well known figures in the history of Romania. A large part of the story has been based on the town of Whitby. The fascinating features in the town contributed a lot towards making Stoker consider it in writing his novel.

The places described in the novel are existent in real life and hence the author combined reality and fiction in the building of his story. The characters used in the story are fictional. Each character is assigned his/her own traits. The character traits are different depending on the role each character was assigned to.

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