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Meagan Gagnon (A close reading)
Something that confused me in this reading was a line right as the men enter Mina's room in Chapter 21. There was an extreme amount of detail in this Chapter, as Seward explained that he would do ("not a detail that I can recall must be forgotten" (241 Norton Critical Edition)), yet all of the detail ultimately serves a greater purpose. The purpose of Van Helsing's fall, however, seems to be less apparent than others. "...The door did not yield. We threw ourselves against it; with a crash it burst open, and we almost fell headlong into the room. The Professor did actually fall, and I saw across him as he gathered himself from hands and knees."  The Professor is usually more agile. What makes this instance different? Why did the other, less physically-capable men able to keep their balance?  I would argue that this demonstrates the extreme passion that Van Helsing has, for often times he moves without much thought. He, in this instance is putting everything into his actions, while his companions retain enough composure (typical of the British) to remain balanced. His fall is almost comedic, and is further juxtaposed with the horrifying yet majestic man inside of the room. Perhaps there is another meaning that I am missing, or perhaps I am questioning a passage that does not need it, but regardless it is a passage that demonstrates the true nature of this Professor in which these characters have so much faith.



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