Edgar Allan Poe Gothic Elements

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2. INTRODUCTION- LIFE AND WORKS OF EDGAR ALLAN POE

Edgar Allan Poe represent the first great literary generation of United States of America, this was the Romantic period in American literature. The Romantic outlook in case of novels was expressed in the form of romance but romances were not love stories. The protagonists of the American romance were generally haunted, alienated individuals. The isolated and alienated characters in the tales written by Poe were unknown and mysterious individuals who were pitted against dark fates that were a result of their deepest unconscious self. His plots unriddle the hidden actions and intentions of the troubled spirit. Edgar Allan Poe was a southerner and he had a dark metaphysical outlook
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Gothic tales are stories of mystery, bloodshed; they may also contain the elements of supernatural and are generally set in huge, dull, desolate landscapes – like mysterious forest, medieval castles with dungeons, broken and worn out foyers etc. The protagonist of these tales in some of the other manner are in close contact with the supernatural like the monsters apparitions and curses, demonic powers, sinister designs, witches and necromancy etc. The atmosphere of the horror fiction is stupefying, full of gloom, spooky spectacles and paranormal activities. In ‘The Fall of the House of Usher’, Poe gives a vivid description of the sinister day of the first few lines of the story itself “during the hole of a dull and soundless day in the autumn of the year when the clouds hung oppressively low in the heavens, I had been passing alone on horse back, through a singularly dreary tract of country and at length found myself, as the shades of the evening drew on, within view of the melancholy House of Usher”[6] and hence it becomes very clear for the readers to may out that there is something devilish awaiting the narrator in …show more content…
The story begins and ends in the ‘chamber’ and even the police were made to sit in the same room where the murder was committed – “I brought chairs into the room, and desired them here to rest from their fatigues when I myself, in the wild audacity of my perfect triumph placed my own seat upon the very spot beneath which reposed the corpse of the victim.” On the other hand the setting is very Gothic and immensely horrid in ‘The Pit and The Pendulum’. The narrator here is sentenced to death by the Spanish inquisition and then he is imprisoned in a ‘dudgeon’ that at first appeared to have ‘stone floors’ but later the narrators observes that the area of enclosure is of iron or some other metal and it’s shape is square. There is ‘a circular pit’ which he finds to be a well. “The general shape of the prison was square, what I had taken for masonry seemed now to be iron or some other metal in huge plates, whose sutures or joints occasion the depression. The entire surface of this metallic enclosure was rudely daubed in all the hideous and repulsive devices to which the charnel superstition of the monks has given rise. The figures of fiend in aspects of menace, with skeleton forms, and other more really fearful images, overspread and disfigured the walls. I observed that the outlines of these monstrosities were sufficiently distinct, but that the colour seemed faded and blurred as if

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