Gaston Leroux, Faust And The Phantom: An Analysis

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In Philip J. Riley’s, “Gaston LeRoux, Faust and the Phantom,” he demonstrates to his readers how LeRoux derived “The Phantom of the Opera” from Faust. Riley analyzes LeRoux’s work to show how LeRoux created the entire world of Erik and the opera house. After talking about Erik’s character, based on Faust, Riley additionally refers to how LeRoux integrated the actual Paris Opera House. Eventually, Riley shows how LeRoux incorporated Erik’s disease from the medical reference books he kept on hand. Finally, Riley shows how LeRoux includes the French classic of Beauty and the Beast to add a love interest to his story as well as substantiate Erik’s humanity. Riley asserts LeRoux’s story was so crowd-pleasing because of the factual data and events that took place in and around the Paris Opera House …show more content…
I thought I would have more extensive reading regarding how Erik and Faust were more alike. Riley glosses over the character of Faust and talks about how the French composer Charles Gounod brought life to the opera Faust which influenced LeRoux. It was very intriguing to read how LeRoux genuinely wanted his readers to believe in his character, the Phantom, and brought authenticity to his story by incorporating actual events that happened at the time. Riley explains in great detail how LeRoux came up with Erik’s illness, I found it attention-grabbing; it was interesting to learn that a transcript that LeRoux had in his library regarding Joseph Merrick, the Elephant Man, helped LeRoux build the character of Erik. It was by a kindness shown to Joseph that helped LeRoux gain “insight as to how kindness affects one whose life has been littered with abuse and rejection due to his physical appearance.” Although I did not get to read more about the similarities between Faust and Erik, it was interesting to learn how the story originated into life from real

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