Saturday, September 13, 2014

A Few Words About Bram Stoker, DRACULA, and Slovaks

I am half-Slovak on my mother's side, and yet I am a huge fan of Bram Stoker's DRACULA. In the novel, Slovaks are not necessarily portrayed in a good light. Stoker had Jonathan Harker saying they were "more barbarian than the rest" and "rather wanting in natural self-assertion". Slovaks also numbered among Dracula's evil henchmen. It could be said that Stoker's portrayal of Slovaks displayed an ethnic prejudice.

BTW, this portrayal of Slovaks as Dracula's evil henchmen is carried over into BBC's 1977 COUNT DRACULA. Even so, I am a fan of the film.

I could be offended by both Stoker's DRACULA and the 1997 BBC film adaptation of the novel, but I'm not. I could complain about Slovaks being portrayed as barbaric thugs lacking independent identities, but I don't.

1 comment:

Richard Fay said...

I bet there is a lot more talk in the genre community about Lovecraft's racism than there is about Stoker's ethnic prejudice.