Analysis on I'm the King of the Castle (by Susan Hill)- The Red Room Scene

Topics: Fear, Taxus baccata, The Red Room Pages: 3 (1170 words) Published: January 29, 2014

The Red Room is a significant scene in the novel I’m the King of the Castle due to the many themes and issues that are prominent throughout the entire novel are manifested in this scene in two main ways: symbolism and descriptions. The author uses these to highlight the main themes of the novel, among them Hooper’s power over Kingshaw, as well as Kingshaw’s own insecurities and deep fears. So far, Hooper has shown to be more powerful than Kingshaw in many ways, and we have been given only hints about Kingshaw’s weakness. However, in this essay, I’m going to show examples that reflect the huge significance of the Red Room scene in the novel regarding its issues and themes.

In the extract from chapter 2, Hooper shows power over Kingshaw when he says about his superiority over death, or dead things. For example, on pg. 40 “Yes, but you can’t touch them can you. You’ve got to touch them.” This shows how Hooper has power over Kingshaw as he lacks his fear of touching dead things. I think that this reflects Hooper’s desire to gain power from Kingshaw through his fear in a very effective way, as he states his inability to touch the dead moths, and Hooper does this to transmit to Kingshaw a sense of nervousness and powerlessness. This also links when Hooper says to Kingshaw on pg. 40: “Why not? Scaredy-baby, scared of a moth!” This shows Hooper asserting his dominance over Kingshaw by mockingly stating his fear. I think that this quote shows one of the few moments in the whole novel where Hooper loses his usual calm and deadly state, in which he is when he torments Kingshaw most of the time. Also, by rhetorically asking him: “Why not?” Its obvious that he has discovered another one of his weaknesses, and is eager to exploit it and prove his power and dominance over him.

Kingshaw shows his insecurity by, as stated before, his fear. For example, on pg. 41: “He was ashamed of being so afraid, and he could not help it, he only...
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