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Compare the Red Room, extracts from Jane Eyre and The Fall of the House of Usher explaining how the writers create character, atmosphere and setting using the conventions of gothic horror writing.

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Compare the Red Room, extracts from Jane Eyre and The Fall of the House of Usher explaining how the writers create character, atmosphere and setting using the convections of gothic horror writing. During the pre-1914 period a number of stories had a gothic theme. The Red Room, Jane Eyre and The Fall of the House of Usher are three good examples. Gothic was the architectural style of architects when they design arches and buildings. It consisted of pointed arches and steep roofs, windows larger in proportion to the wall spaces. Gothic also relates to the style of writing that emphasizes the grotesque, mysterious and the desolate. Characters All three stories are written from the first person perspective and the characters have no idea in what they are in for. In the Red Room, the 28 year old protagonist, arrogant with a confident impression is going to spend a night in a red room where no-one dares to venture. "I can assure you," said I, "that it will take a very tangible ghost to frighten me." Charlotte Bronte does the same thing to Jane Eyre where she has been sent to live with her rich relatives who are spiteful to her, especially John Reed the schoolboy of fourteen. Finally when Jane plucks up her courage to fight back insulting him first, "You are like a murderer- you are like a slave driver,-you are like the roman emperors!" ...read more.


In Jane Eyre there is a difference atmosphere between the characters; hatred. She hates the Reeds, especially John who she in the extract, '...mused on the disgusting and ugly appearance of him...' Charlotte Bronte shows here that when she was small and her mother died in 1821 she was sent to a family she hated and that the book 'Jane Eyre' portrays her sad upbringing of her life. Also Charlotte Bronte takes advantages of the gothic horror novels and uses her techniques to make her readers enjoy making sympathy for her. The language of these three gothic writers relate to the complex language gothic stories contain. The complex language makes the reader create their own liking or disliking of the character. Atmosphere and Setting All gothic novels and stories always have a build up of atmosphere and setting. Gothic writers unravel the story bit by bit to create suspense and mystery. H G Wells uses long descriptive sentences like, 'These I put in various knick-knacks of china with the room which was sparsely adorned, lit and placed where the shadows had lain deepest, some on the floor, some on the window recesses, until at last my seventeen candles were so arranged that not an inch of the room but has the direct light of at least one of them.' to describe actions, '...placed were the shadows had lain deepest,' and the setting of the Red Room itself, '... ...read more.


It is a novel while the other two are short stories. Jane Eyre has more dialogue so less tension occurs. '"What were you doing behind the curtain?" "I was reading," "Show the book."' The short stories have more impact on the reader as the writer squeezes all the gothic writing techniques in possible creating mystery and suspense. '... the bewildering influence of gloomy furniture of the room- of the dark and tattered draperies,' Also the short story writers don't have place to put in a lot of speech or else their stories will become short novels and their atmosphere will be lost. The novel Jane Eyre is more a listing of events with description but not as much tension as the other books. ', not at first aware what was his intention,' but when I saw him lift and poise the book and stand in act to hurl it,' As the actions are listed by Charlotte Bronte uses large ranges of punctuation to break it up making it a complex sentence. Also words like 'complacently', 'predominated', 'consolatory' show that Charlotte Bronte used gothic elements such as complex vocabulary. In the end all three books contained gothic convections; complex vocabulary and short sentences are some examples. All books where full of tension caused by love and hatred. Gothic elements make the stories more thrilling and reflect the period they were written in time when three was no television or media. Omar Alimazighi English Mrs Button Pre-1914 Literature ...read more.

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