Children's Gothic Literature: Poem Analysis

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Gothic literature is meant to combine plot points of horror, death, and romance in a thrilling story, or tale. The history of children 's gothic literature goes just as far back as storytelling goes, and is marked by both classic gothic and gothic children 's literature characteristics. Classic gothic literature involves : romance, good versus evil, heroes and damsels; whereas today children’s gothic involves high tech computers, texting, the blurring line of good and evil, school grounds. But there are still similarities between the two that make modern day scary stories a gothic spine shivering tale. These tales still have settings that are similar to the child, or so unknowingly different that it must be scary, they have creatures that happen to be grotesquely …show more content…
For the poem to take its full scary effect, I believe the poem has to be viewed along with the illustration. The amazing illustrator Arnold Lobel creates a boring, run-of-the-mill school, that an average American can recognize as school they have encountered before. The picture as you can see is black and white, which I think is key for a good creepy illustration, has a regular old looking school building, and finally a ghoul lurking on the jungle gym. The Illustration is what makes this poem for me, it adds that familiarity that Karen Coats mentions in her Introductory essay for The gothic in Children 's Literature: haunting the borders, she says that a good gothic villain is one that “Is a fearsome creature because they transform the familiar into the strange and threatening,” the illustration of the ghoul is very human like from what we can tell add his intense staring only adds to the effect of the illustration. Throughout the book the illustrator embraces Edward Gorey’s type of art and does a remarkable job, and is unlike the illustrations of the other books I

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