Dracula: Scientific Method (?)

Expanding on my first Dracula blog post; I want to return to Stoker’s exposure to new science and its influence upon his writing.

As I mentioned before, Stoker was well-aware of germ theory and other such budding scientific explorations as well as had family members involved in medical science; which, I believe, he may very well have been influenced by. The way in which it manifests itself in Dracula can be seen in the methodical way Van Helsing and Arthur (and the rest of the gang) exterminate the vampires. They take a very logical, almost scientific method-sort of approach; killing them one by one in a particular, procedural fashion after having figured out the means of doing so. So, in that way, they have asked a question, formed an hypothesis, and conducted an experiment of their finds.

Thus, Lucy is staked through the heart (as that is the discovered way in which the vamps can be killed), then her body is decapitated and her mouth filled with garlic. The weird sisters, as well as Dracula, are taken out in a fairly similar way; by penetration to the heart or decapitation.

The only aspect that negates this scientific method idea is that the surviving characters don’t explain their actions or write them out in any detail; their results go unpublished without regret. Despite this, it’s interesting and fun to believe Stoker had this sort of idea in the back of his mind as he wrote. At least in part.

 

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  1. […] Dracula: Scientific Method (?) […]

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