Unity of Effect: the Fall of the House of Usher Essay

975 Words Mar 3rd, 2013 4 Pages
ENG1120 G
7 February 2013
Unity of Effect: The Fall of the House of Usher Throughout Edgar Allan Poe’s career he was one of major author’s to write about the theory of composition. Throughout this piece he wrote about the unity of effect, stating that it should be how an author decides what effect he/she wants to create in the reader’s emotional response, then how to proceed by using creativity to achieve this particular effect. Once choosing the certain effect that one truly desires, the author would then decide the best way to establish this, whether it be through incidents, the plot, symbolism, narration, or the tone. Unity of effect is certainly used for a lot, if not all of the literary elements throughout The Fall of the House of
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Even the narrator describes the mansion as having, “…an atmosphere which had no affinity with the air of heaven…” (Poe 18), being nowhere close to beautiful, holy, or even clean for the matter, but rather sinister, decayed, strange, and dull. Although through the descriptive setting establishes the gloomy and grim atmosphere, symbolism also contributes to Poe’s unity of effect. For the most part, symbolism is the custom of representing things through symbols, or placing things with a symbolic meaning or character. Surely, this symbolism is used almost everywhere in The Fall of the House of Usher starting with just the house itself. Most of the symbolism in the house of Usher is internal, such as the house not only serves as a dwelling but also represent the family itself, along with the gruesome images inside the house. Not only does the strangeness of the story also represent the strange thought of the Usher’s but also the upside down reflection shown by the tarn also symbolizes the family’s way of thinking as well. Needless to say, the house is associated symbolically in many ways; the house’s front wall seems to be in decay as described and also resembles a skull like image associated with death. Not only is the front wall human like, but the eye like windows are almost like a mirror image of Roderick’s large and luminous eyes. Furthermore, the Usher house appears so fragile that its instability, along with the physical deterioration, and fungi

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