Essay on The Fall Of The House Of Usher By Edgar Allan Poe

996 Words Sep 21st, 2016 4 Pages
In The Fall of the House of Usher, Edgar Allan Poe utilizes his famously grim writing to tell the story of an unnamed narrator witnessing the literal fall of the Usher family -- Roderick and Madeline of Usher. While the plotline itself is dark and mysterious, Poe employs various literary devices to fully express the creepiness of the story. One useful literary device used in this story is setting. The setting amplifies the emotions and state of the characters and helps to clearly define themes throughout the tale. Poe uses an ominous and eerie setting to convey the central themes relating to madness, family, and fear while unifying the story under the single effect of terror.
One central theme seen throughout this story is that madness can derive from one’s environment, including not only physical surroundings but the surrounding people as well. An example of how Poe uses the environment to insue madness can be seen in the beginning when the narrator first encounters the House of Usher. He describes the day as “dull, dark, and soundless”, and describes the house as being surrounded by “an iciness, a sinking, a sickening of the heart” (1228). Just as stormy, gloomy days can cause seasonal depression, the bleakness and darkness of the area surrounding the house seems to affect the narrator in a negative way. While the narrator has just stepped foot onto the Usher property, Roderick and Madeline have been living in this dim estate for their entire lives, which could be a…

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