Home Riot Creative Contest 2017 - Narrative

[COMPLETE] A Type of Liberation

The great diversity of nations and factions in Runeterra provides fertile soil for exploring a variety of topics. In short, my writing is full of social commentary and political interpretations of "Dracula", which, I think, go quite well together. I will elaborate on some of the ideas I put into the story in my next post.

I hope my submission is a fun read. Enjoy!


  • BramStoker
    Disclaimer: I am a maths graduate, so my attempts at analyzing classics are layman at best.

    The below is my explanation of why I saw Vlad as fitting for this type of plot. I have too much fun analyzing Noxian society in my free time.

    [spoiler]One of my favorite short stories is "Pierre Menard, author of Don Quixote" by Borges. It's a short read, but it will change your perception of fiction. Borges asks: What if Don Quixote was written today? Assuming no changes to the work, how would a different historical setting for the novel's inception change its meaning? How would a different author change the way we analyze the text? Will we find it relevant to the philosophical problems of today? He suggest a fun game which examines how we see the relationship between author, era and work, which can enrich the experience of reading many classics.
    With this in mind I invite you to read "Dracula" in the context of contemporary social debates, specifically the clash between conservative and liberal cultures we encounter every day when we talk about immigration and diplomacy (or the contrast between open and closed societies, illustrated with the cultures of Noxus and Demacia). Just for fun, assume unreliable narrators and suddenly Stoker's novel can be read as the tragic story of a progressively minded foreigner immigrating into a prudish, stagnated country (Victorian England). His behavior influences local women and inspires them to seek freedom from Victorian social norms but ultimately shocks the local population and causes the death of one of those women  - Lucy. The scene of her murder by a group of men is quite interesting to read.
    Such contemporary Freudian readings of "Dracula" are abundant in academia. Judith Weissman writes: "Their (i.e. the main characters in the novel's) fight to destroy Dracula and to restore Mina to her purity is really a fight for control over women." To the Victorians the Count seemed a savage and an enemy of civilization. But as 21 century people we know he merely heralded the social changes that were to come. In more recent history, especially the 90s and 2000s vampire stories often contain themes of power, personal freedom and sexual liberation (please let's pretend Twilight never happened). Dracula himself also embodies the author's fear of immigrants and reverse colonization, as the cultural diversity of the Balkans scared Stoker. Interesting paper.
    Now back to League of Legends, I enjoy the direction the concept can take. We know very little about Vlad (at the time of writing this at least), but we know he's quintessentially Noxian, and that his powers come from research and study of the forces of life rather than being bitten in the past.  Of course social progress goes hand in hand with science! He is a worthy representative of his faction's ideals of personal freedom and unity. An open, cosmopolitan society seeking expansion and economic advancement could use a symbol like him.
    So with this in mind I decided to flip the Lucy story in "Dracula" and give it a more contemporary retelling. This time Lucy is the immigrant/refugee, but she still comes from a repressive culture. Stoker pretends Lucy was pure before meeting the foreigner, but as 21st century people we know how stupid the idea of purity is (the metaphor of magic in Lux and Garen lores comes in handy here). In "Dracula" Lucy gets murdered with a wooden stake as a result of her search for liberation. In my story Lucy seeks intellectual fulfillment and liberation to mend the wrongs done to her by her oppressive culture, represented by the stake. The stake is always there when who you are contradicts the principles of your nation.[/spoiler]

    Have I written too much? I only wrote the above because the Dracula reference is almost impossible to catch, but not necessary for enjoying the story (I hope!).

    There are many controversial themes in my story and I would not want to make a point blank statement about any of them. Often the limits between individual characters and their cultures blur and shift. I guess the end with the two powerful aristocrats discussing how to use the girl to advance their pursuits is testament to how I don't see them as one-sided issues.

    I hope you enjoy!

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