Read Along,  Show Notes

Episode 148: “Dracula” by Bram Stoker, Ch. 8-11

Welcome back to The Literary Life podcast today and our series on Bram Stoker’s Dracula. This week Angelina Stanford, Cindy Rollins, and Thomas Banks cover chapters 8-11 of the book. Angelina explains both the “New Woman” and “Angel in the House” ideas of the Victorian era and makes some observations about Dr. Seward’s interactions with Renfield in contrast to the nuns ministrations to Jonathan Harker. We are also introduced to Dr. Van Helsing in this section of the book as the foil for Dracula, and we quickly learn that he is more than just a medical man. Our hosts discuss Stoker’s own medical knowledge and both the historical and metaphorical context of the blood transfusion procedures in these chapters.

Thomas will be offering a webinar on Henry VIII and his times, which you can register for at Kelly Cumbee will also be teaching a course on The Chronicles of Narnia and medieval cosmology in February, and registration is now open.

Now is the time to get your copy of Hallelujah: Cultivating Advent Traditions with Handel’s Messiah in time for celebrating Advent with your family. You can also get a recording of the Advent to Remember webinar at

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Commonplace Quotes:

Once the imagination has been awakened, it is procreative. Through it we can give more than we were given, say more than we had to say. This is a beautiful double proposition, that art enlarges our repertoire for being, and that it further enables a giving onwards of that enriched utterance, that broadened perception.

Lewis Hyde

The passions are more powerful than the gods. If the gods speak, which they seldom do, the passions drown their voices.

Walter Savage Lander

The gods love blood.

Leconte de Lisle

What can the world be to him who lives for thought, if there be no supreme and perfect Thought? None but such poor struggles after thought as he finds in himself? Take the eternal Thought from the heart of things, no longer can any beauty be real, no more can shape, motion, aspect of nature, have significance in itself or sympathy with human soul.

George MacDonald

A Dream Within a Dream

by Edgar Allan Poe

Take this kiss upon the brow!
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow —
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.

I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand —
How few! yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep — while I weep!
O God! Can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?
Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream?

Book List:

Beauty in the Word by Stratford Caldecott

The Gifts of Reading by Robert Macfarlane

The Gift by Lewis Hyde

Imaginary Conversations by Walter Savage Landor

A Dish of Orts by George MacDonald

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You can find Angelina and Thomas at, on Instagram @angelinastanford, and on Facebook at

Find Cindy at, on Instagram @cindyordoamoris and on Facebook at Check out Cindy’s own Patreon page also!

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