Good vs. Evil in 'Dracula' 12th Grade

In the Gothic novel Dracula, Bram Stoker largely presents good and evil in stark contrast in a very simple manner. This perhaps mirrors Victorian views of good and evil as opposed yet inextricable, a strict view of right and wrong in a religious sense. But more interesting than this construct is the character of Renfield, the man who appears to be neutral, caught between the clearly righteous good and the evidently evil. Throughout the novel, he is submerged in a metaphorical grey area. Stoker uses Renfield to provoke deeper thought about good and evil, and indeed wants the reader to fear this grey area itself.

Often, Stoker does tend to present quite easily accessible interpretations on good and evil. For example, when Mina is fed on by and equally feeds from Dracula in chapter twenty one, the literary technique isn't hard to suss out. Descriptions such as “white-clad” and “clad in black” are used to describe Mina and Dracula: the colours are obviously opposed but Stoker has even gone as far as switching the syntax of the adjectives to emphasise the opposing ideas. You also see Mina’s “nightdress” which has been “smeared with blood” and which thus has connotations of a loss of virginity, due to the Victorian belief that the...

Join Now to View Premium Content

GradeSaver provides access to 722 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 4148 literature essays, 1394 sample college application essays, 171 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.

Join Now

Already a member? Log in