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Elizabeth

So - they use knives! Shades of Jack the Ripper...

Elizabeth

At almost the last moment, Stoker changed the ending, omitting a section about the destruction of the castle. For details about the omission, go to the Dracula Research Centre (www.blooferland.com/drc) and follow the link for "Bram Stoker and Dracula: Miscellaneous Documents".

Anne

"He... got out some provisions and forced them upon me. But I could not eat, to even try to do so was repulsive to me, and much as I would have liked to please him, I could not bring myself to the attempt."

Mina hasn't eaten for several days (unless she has, and we don't hear about it). Is there an implication that she has gone temporarily vampire, or is it something else? To what extent is she vampiric?

Helen

I think she has gone vampiric--or almost. Look at the Van Helsing entry for November 4th when all of a sudden she looked more blooming--and stopped eating normal food. No one to feast on except Van Helsing and the horses, which hadn't died yet---just a hint but a very clear one, I thought. Then when later on she turned pale inside the sacred ring he was delighted because that was better than having her look well.

Elizabeth

According to Encyclopedia Americana (1993, vol 9, p 325) Dracula dies when a stake is driven through his heart. Popular misconception, fed by endless movies, is one thing. But one expects better from "reliable sources." As I have discovered in the course of my research, there are few reliable sources when it comes to Stoker and his novel. Reader beware!

Writing-desk Raven

Re. hasn't eaten
She couldn't abide garlic of late, either.

> No one to feast on except Van Helsing and the horses
Helen | November 08, 2005 at 03:26 AM
Was a vampire surviving on animals in Stoker's chosen lore, or added by other authors?
Elizabeth might know.
I thought Stoker's vampires had to have human sustenance, for the multiple lurid metaphorical implications.

-=-

In good physical condition, we can last a while without sustenance.
Our bodies will signal otherwise, seemingly insisently, but with will or training the actual limits for going without air, water, sleep, or food could be surprising, even without training.

Fasting 1-3 days is recommended by many training regimens. With hydration, hunger strikers can go about a month before authorities should be getting duly concerned.

Victorian women were a little more Marilyn Monroe than Heroin Look, so they could well handle missing a few meals. Younger middle-class or even upper-class Victorians were generaly not remotely as sedentary as modern couch potatoes. No cars. No phones, no TV. After poor Lucy left, all our young protagonists were in at least very good shape by modern measure. Mina turned out to be no shrinking flower. No appetite, but no less will.

Stoker is subtly suggesting further aspects of the ebbing and flowing struugle within Mina as well as the one without involving the group.

Anne Rice explored this changing from several perspectives. Mina may well simply be losing appetite as she changes, slowly. Note that Dr. VH kept watch on Lucy's teeth, and initially on Mina's. Nothing further of this has been said, so likely, like the weakening hypnotic link with Dracula, the changes in Mina are slowing these days of November. Further (foreshadowing the character of Ripley), Mina is possessed of a focus and a will that belie appearance and Victorian (or even conventional) stereotypes. If Mina were, say, working class--or Black--then such determination in a woman might be less suprising.
-W-d R

Elizabeth

"I thought Stoker's vampires had to have human sustenance ..."

Yes, they do.

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