The objectification and subjugation of women in Angela Carter’s short story collection The Bloody Chamber is part of the latent content of her exposed version of the traditional fairy tales, of which “The Lady of the House of Love” could be a loose rewriting of The Sleeping Beauty. “Wearing an antique bridal gown, the beautiful queen of the vampires sits all alone in her dark, high house” (Carter 84) and she is the only Carter’s heroine who manages to objectify a man, instead of being objectified herself. She is condemned never to be happy with a man because, like a werewolf, her insatiable hunger causes her to kill her potential mates:“She rises when the sun sets and goes immediately to her table where she plays her game of patience until she grows hungry, until she becomes ravenous. She is so beautiful she is unnatural; her beauty is an abnormality, a deformity… Her beauty is a symptom of her disorder, of her soullessness.” (Carter 85)It is obvious that she, just like Stoker’s three beautiful vampires, is liberated from the conventions of being a female. But, she is shackled by her own hunger. In addition, her story allows the readers to view the other side of the objectification, and how it harms both parties: “The blood on the Countess’ cheeks will be mixed with tears” (Carter 87). She is the proof that liberation is not for everyone, it is only for the strong ones, those who are aware of the fact that going against conventions and society results in one being an outcast, an undesirable part of the society he willingly shunned. Accordingly, the Countess. Vampire Women in Bram Stokers Dracula and Angela Carters The Lady of the House of Love.
Carter, Angela. The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories. New York: Penguin Group, 1993. Print.
Stoker, Bram. Dracula. New York: Barnes & Noble Inc, 2003. Print.
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