Dracula: The Self-Aware Mass of Typewriting
The era of industrialization ushered in new ways of disseminating and creating art. Along with technological innovation come the anxious reservations of aesthetic purists. These reservations stem from wariness about the dehumanizing effect of mechanical reproduction and a sense of powerlessness over the work of art in its mediated form. In the aftermath of the printing press, writers and artists have struggled to understand this new phenomenon and its effect on the creation of texts. Two texts, Bram Stoker's Dracula and Walter Benjamin's "Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproducibility" reflect this towards technology and its effect on the art of writing.
In his essay, Benjamin focuses on how the shape of art and its reception have changed in an age of technological reproduction. He also assesses the effects of this new artistic medium on an increasingly evolving public. Simply put, mechanical reproducibility has allowed for the proliferation of copies of art. This has dissolved the validity of the concept of originality in art. There is a rejection of traditional functions of art in favor of new and more expansive functions. Art is now a product for mass consumption and loses its uniqueness, its "aura."...
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