Elizabeth Bowen "The Demon Lover"

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Elizabeth Bowen "The Demon Lover"

In Elizabeth Bowen’s, The Demon Lover, the story revolves around the central character Mrs. Drover. As the reader finishes the story it is unclear whether she was abducted by the devil, her deceased fiancé, or she was in the midst of a war time induced hallucination. In order to decipher the events the reader must interrupt the clues concerning the letter, Mrs. Drover’s flashback to World War I, and determine who the taxi cab driver was. It is my impression that there was substantial evidence given by Bowen to suggest that it was Mrs. Drover’s mental status that shaped the world she was experiencing. Through the analysis of events and Mrs. Drover’s mood and behavior I will prove that she was under the influence of a wartime hallucination and was not abducted by a supernatural being.

The time and setting of this story must not be overlooked. They shape the stressful atmosphere that aid in the manifestation of Mrs. Drover’s hallucination. Bowen describes London in a state of disrepair covered by a rainy and overcast gloominess. The fact that the story takes place in London during World War II is significant since during those trying times peoples feared for their lives while the Germans’ nightly bombings were unrelenting. It was this fear that forced the Drover’s to move their family to the country. The story begins with a woman traveling alone through a war zone accenting on the heighten feelings of fear within Mrs. Drover. Mrs. Drover’s demeanor is slowly and carefully presented to the reader. Mrs. Drover admits to being untrusting and suspicious of her caretaker without any justification lent. This trait is commonly linked to people with paranoia. Bowen then describes Mrs. Drover as a “characterless” woman whose typical expression is one of controlled worry. Her state of mind is anxious, mentioning the emotion twice under the context of her worrying about the state of her house. Bowen then describes that she felt...
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