These ideas are exposed to greatest effect when using the critical perspective of deconstruction in an attempt to see the story from another character’s perspective. As these concepts are difficult to define or explain, literature provides examples and analogies that bridge gaps in understanding as well as pose new questions to be answered. It also helps us to understand how these ideas were being formed and reinforced within the society in which these texts were written. Bram Stoker’s story of Dracula is very popular and has been depicted in numerous films and other materials for years. It is therefore difficult to come to the book without any pre-conceived ideas about the plot. However, reading the book is vastly different from simply watching the movie and provides the opportunity to see the story as it really is – a collection of writings that may have been as much fiction as the novel itself.
The book begins with the journal entries of Jonathan Harker, a British lawyer traveling through Transylvania in order to complete a deal for his employer with Count Dracula who resides deep within the Carpathian Mountains. Within this journal, Dracula is portrayed as a man charming enough to set his guest at ease despite a shrieking instinct and misgivings founded on village rumors. He is described as ‘courtly’, ‘charming’ and ‘courteous’ even as he provides his guest with a warm and comfortable luxury suite in which to stay (Stoker, 1897: Ch. 2). He has ruddy red lips that give him an “unexpected air of vitality” (Ch. 2), but his breath is horrendous, making Harker feel ill. Harker also comments upon Dracula’s extremely pale complexion, the unusually pointy teeth that protrude over his bottom lip and the icy cold touch of his hands, which have, incidentally, been manicured to provide him with very pointy fingernails. His journal is so detailed because it