Reflections on Dracula Ten Essays


By Dr. Elizabeth Miller

Dr. Elizabeth Miller is recognized around Memorial as an English professor with a deep interest in Dracula. But this recognition extends beyond Memorial. Her latest book, Reflections on Dracula: Ten Essays, was published by Transylvania Press in White Rock, BC, and launched at the Castle Dracula Hotel in the Borgo Pass, Transylvania, home of the fictional Count Dracula of Bram Stoker's 1897 novel.

The 10 essays cover a variety of topics relating to Dracula, ranging from a reassessment of the connection between the historical Dracula, Vlad Tepes, and the vampire Count to a series of anecdotes about life as a Dracula aficionado.

In the preface, Dr. Miller called the book "a series of independent commentaries on Stoker's novel and its far-reaching influences since its publication over 100 years ago.

"The first five essays deal with topics peripheral to the novel, ranging from a scholarly assessment of the connection between Stoker's Count and the historical Dracula, to a more lighthearted series of personal anecdotes and observations about life as a Dracula enthusiast. The other five focus on the novel itself, and include a reassessment of the vampire hunters, an analysis of how the text has shape-shifted since its first appearance, and an evaluation of why Dracula has endured."

On the lighthearted side, Dr. Miller decribes in a chapter entitled "Life as a Dracula Aficionado" how an English professor who "looks as if she could be anyone's mother," according to a television news anchor, came to be a recognized Dracula expert.

But essays such as one entitled "Dracula and Shakespeare: The Count Meets the Bard," reflect the impact of Stoker's novel, as does the detailed bibliography.

All the essays are the work of Dr. Miller, save for a portion of Chapter Two on which she was assisted by Margaret Carter, a prominent writer and reviewer.

"I decided that a discussion of literary vampires in the 20th century might benefit from a collaborative presentation," according to Dr. Miller.

Reflections on Dracula is available at the MUN bookstore.