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Gothic Literature

By djcook96 Jan 26, 2014 508 Words
Dale Cook
Ms. Tinord
Honors English IV
1 August 2013
Gothic Literature at Its Finest
To a gothic literature buff it would seem to be the greatest sight of all time; Two of arguably the greatest gothic poets of all time, Mary Shelley and Edgar Allan Poe, side by side. This, however, is not the case. Fortunately for poets their personality is still embodied throughout their works of literature. Seeing as they are both gothic poets that would in essence make their literary works very similar. Consequently it causes the constant comparison between the two of the authors. The comparisons are more specifically between the two famous stories, Frankenstein and The Tell Tale Heart.

Both stories include several similar elements making them very easy to relate. One of which is the theme of love and hate. In the Tell Tale Heart Poe interprets love and hate as universal emotions. As a consequence the narrator portrays simultaneous love for himself and hatred of his rival. This too can be shown in Frankenstein. In the novel, Dr. Frankenstein states how the monster was once ‘loved and beloved by all’ (78). Once you go deeper into the story the love for the creature turns into hatred. The monster hurt several people trying to please the doctor and came out empty handed. Dr. Frankenstein channels his newfound hatred for monster into attempts on trying to stop all the madness the monster was creating.

Not just themes however were similar between the two stories. The settings of both of the stories were quite the same in actuality. In the Tell Tale Heart, the setting is not necessarily given to the reader so they have to infer about the setting. The tale told inside the however takes place inside an old, dark home. The bedroom of the old man is described as a place where horror plays in the dark while the old man sleeps. In Frankenstein the setting is more straightforward and given to the reader. The story takes place in several places across Europe. How might these settings be similar you may ask? The similarity is coming from the underlying air that all the places give off. This is an air of darkness, Horror, and small stints of depression.

Another more obvious yet subtle comparison between the two is the language that is used in both stories. In Frankenstein; Shelley uses language to create tension within the novel adding to the suspensefulness of the story as a whole. In Tell Tale Heart, Poe also uses his words to create suspense throughout the duration of the novel. Poe words, however, evoke more emotion out of its audience than that of Frankenstein. Descriptive words are used well in both novels such as the words ‘dark’ and ‘horrifying’.

All in all, both of the short stories share quite the same characteristics as each other. Then again they are both world renowned gothic poets so the similarities within the stories are forgiven. Maybe that why the world loves the two stories, and still talk about them to this day.

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