Is Dracula anti-Semitic?
I saw something posted on social media the other day. Somebody was calling for all members of the Vampire Community to take a stand for marginalized groups. That’s a good thing. Would that we all would take a stand for marginalized groups. Unfairly marginalized groups, that is. Some groups ought to be marginalized. Nazis, terrorists, pedophiles, Bronies. But that’s not what this post was talking about.
I was all good with the sentiment until the person doing the posting alleged that Dracula was a symbol of anti-Semitism, and accused Bram Stoker of the same. Sometimes one should take the time and care to pen a thoughtful, introspective, and involved rebuttal to an argument. There are other times when a succinct response is not only justified but perfectly adequate. This is a case of the latter. In response, then, to this absurd allegation: horseshit.
One *could* argue that DRACULA represents xenophobia, a fear of the “other.” But who says that “other” has to be Jewish? Isn’t it, if we are completely honest about it, a little racist to assume that it does, or is? The character Dracula isn’t Jewish. Considering the lack of qualms Victorian authors had with making villainous characters Jewish—Fagin in Charles Dickens’s OLIVER TWIST, for example—if Stoker had intended his character to be a negative reflection of Jews, he would have made him Jewish. Simple as that.
We ought to be careful not to read into a text something that isn’t there based on our own prejudices and concerns. And we ought to be careful lest we become like those who are so “woke” that they ain’t got no damn sense.
WAYNE MILLER is the owner and creative director of EVIL CHEEZ PRODUCTIONS, specializing in theatrical performances and haunted attractions. He has written, produced, and directed (and occasionally acted in) over two dozen plays, most of them in the Horror and True Crime genres. He obtained a doctorate in Occult Studies from Miskatonic University and is an active paranormal investigator. Is frequently told he resembles Anton Lavey. And Ming the Merciless.
Denn die totden reiten schnell!