Bloody Mary, Bloody Mary, Bloody Mary: Repetition in Bram Stoker's Dracula College

Despite having a multitude of tonally different and often interchanged narratives throughout, Bram Stoker’s Dracula is a hotbed of repetitive sensory imagery. However, it would be a disservice to assume that these images recur as the result of a lack of creativity or a failure on the author’s part to embody different viewpoints The repetition is not a mistake, but instead a device utilized by the novel to induce terror in its reader, even beyond what may be considered upsetting or terrifying within the plot content. That being said, the patterns in the novel’s imagery and descriptive diction invoke terror through links to primitivism and the implication of a lack of free will amongst its characters. This becomes evident through three different types of recurring imagery: extremely similar imagery between different passages, repetitive use of descriptive words in single passages, and the consistent presence of a specific element or figure in the narrative.

Within the first three chapters of Dracula, Jonathan Harker’s journal introduces us to three female vampires at Castle Dracula who attempt to seduce and feed off of him. He writes that they have “voluptuous” lips of color “ruby” or “scarlet”, and when they laugh Harker...

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