Quarter 4 IRA – Honors Level
As you are aware, the final outside reading assignment this year is to read Dracula by Bram Stoker. While not the first piece of vampire fiction – it was preceded by The Vampyre, Varney the Vampire, and Carmilla- Stoker’s 1897 classic clearly has had the greatest impact. Early critical reaction to Dracula was mixed. Some early reviewers noted the “unnecessary number of hideous incidents” which could “shock and disgust” readers. One critic even advised keeping the novel away from children and nervous adults. Today the name of Dracula is familiar to many people who may be wholly unaware of Stoker's identity, though the popularly held image of the vampire bears little resemblance to the demonic being that Stoker depicted. Adaptations of Dracula in plays and films have taken enormous liberties with Stoker's characterization. A resurgence of interest in traditional folklore has revealed that Stoker himself did not conform to established vampire legend. Yet Dracula has had tremendous impact on readers since its publication. Whether Stoker evoked a universal fear, or as some modern critics would have it, gave form to a universal fantasy, he created a powerful and lasting image that has become a part of popular culture.
Your assessment therefore is to gauge the impact this novel has had on popular culture, particularly through its affect on film, television, and literature. To do so, you will compare and contrast the novel with another work of vampire fiction, paying special attention to plot elements, thematic content, symbolism, and anything else you find significant. Remember, you are free to choose a film, television program, or another book that you are familiar with. The final product is to be a five paragraph essay. See me with any questions or for suggestions.
The usual format rules apply:
- 12 point Times New Roman
- Motivator, original thesis, and blueprint
- Double spaced; no extra spaces between paragraphs
- 1 inch margins on all sides
- Original title