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Consider the writers' intentions in writing their Gothic stories - To what extent do you consider them to be effective horror stories?

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Introduction

Consider the writers' intentions in writing their Gothic stories. To what extent do you consider them to be effective horror stories? What is horror? Horror is a way of coming to terms with anxieties in each person and in a society as a whole. But horror also plays a role of intensifying the imagination and gives people the adrenaline rush that comes with being scared. Several factors contribute to the creation of different emotions and feelings. Stevenson uses a multitude of ways to give the overall effect of mystery and horror rather than a sudden, obvious indication. This reveals how Stevenson differs from previous gothic writers. The first thing to observe when reading a book is when it was written. This greatly influences the way the book has been written and the impact that it made on people of that time. Stevenson's Jekyll and Hyde book may not seem to terrifying now with films such as the Exorcist coming out. But for the people and era of that time Jekyll and Hyde was a book to be reckoned with and was definitely a bookmark to how gothic stories should be written. The way in which it revolutionized the way that gothic books are, is that the setting and atmosphere were different then previous gothic books. With previous books the only thing they needed to include was that it was dark, foggy, gloomy, isolated area that most likely contained a castle and was set in some unfamiliar part of the world like Transylvania. ...read more.

Middle

Whether it is blood or a concoction. Both writers attempted to give the reader a certain side of a character that had previously never been seen by audiences of the 1880's. Where as Stroker pointed out quite clearly who the evil demon was, Stevenson had a more suspenseful and unique style of only giving away the odd small ounce of information. I think that for his time Stevenson was quite ahead of the game with his piece Jekyll and Hyde. His attention to detail, whether it being about the atmosphere or how a man died was very unique for that time causing him to be famous for writing a novel like Jekyll and Hyde. Both the stories of Jekyll and Hyde and Dracula have certain similarities between them. Both writers pioneered in bending and breaking the rules of classic gothic horror stories. The more traditional of these two stories is Stoker's Dracula. Set in a dark unfamiliar setting of Transylvania, where like most gothic stories there happens to be darkness, fog, isolation and the super natural. Although both are very famous stories they differ in many ways. The story of Jekyll and Hyde is more to do with expressing different ways of really intensifying the readers, or viewers' imagination. Where as Dracula is more to do with the traditional way of scaring people through super natural occurrences that happens in the story, but unlike Jekyll and Hyde, Dracula brings in more emotions. ...read more.

Conclusion

The writers' all include a sense of ambiguity, so to create the tension as much as possible. On top of this they all present characters, unlike any other previously experienced, all of which have mysteriousness about them. An example of this is the signalman. Within the signalman the main character behaves in many paranormal ways. This suggests to the audience that he maybe suffering from either a problem regarding his eye or a problem that causes him to hallucinate the appearance of specters. The effect of bringing new and previously unheard of characters, both astonishes the audience as well as adds to the originality of the horror story on the whole. To conclude I think that the writers were all trying to adjust people's perception of what is scary and what is not. By making the plot and features of the books vary they have accomplished in changing people's views and expectation, both in society and from gothic books. Not only managing this they have also managed to ensure that a combination of features present in books can lead to a book becoming effective. Whether from the characters or from the tension being built up via ambiguity and other devices used to build up tension. The effect of all of these is that it takes people to a place, which they rarely visit, that place being their fears. The purpose of such novels is to make people face up to their fears, which they previously haven't experienced or haven't encountered. This reveals what the writers intention were to take people out of their mundane lives and surprise and shock them with their horror novels. ...read more.

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