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GCSE: The Signalman
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Examine The Treatment Of Fate And The Supernatural In Aselection Of Prose Fiction written Before The 20th Century
As the people living in the nineteenth century were much more superstitious than now, the stories could have really caused fear and suspense to the readers, which made the stories a very good read. The stories are very different from each other but they all use the ideas of fate and the supernatural to create an exciting and scary tale. I will examine and compare some stories from this era to see exactly how they use fate and the supernatural.
- Word count: 3112
But if either one of her daughters got married, then a certain amount of money must go to them. This is not good for Dr Roylott because he could loose out on a lot of money so this could be a motive for murder. He had changed a lot and never spoke to any one or makes friends. This is strange because he is becoming mentally unstable and this builds up a lot of tension in the reader because we know he is going to do something but we don't know what. We are just receiving it bit by bit.
- Word count: 2437
" 'I can assure you,' said I, 'that it will take a very tangible ghost to frighten me.' " They didn't stop him, but only warned him. The narrator says at eight and twenty years, he's never seen a ghost, but the old woman says, "And eight-and-twenty years you have lived and never seen the likes of this house, I reckon. There's a many things to see, when one's still but eight-and-twenty," "A many things to see and sorrow for." The author creates a gothic feeling when he illustrates the sound of one of the old men as he enters the front room to join them.
- Word count: 3287
Compare and contrast the ways in which Dickens and Hardy use superstitious beliefs and supernatural elements to present and develop their main characters in their social settings and local environment
The townsfolk seem to be very quiet and afraid of Rhoda: - they allow their superstition to drive them into timidity, consistently referring to her as "Mrs Brook" or addressing her with both of her names, which is a very formal manner of life. It is as if failure to do so will lead to harsh consequences. Hardy has enhanced this by creating a dream in which the realism of Rhoda's powers are revealed, though she appears to be unaware of the magic she possesses and attempts to dismiss the dream as a subconscious warning of her brutal emotions which she directs towards the young wife.
- Word count: 1525
The main similarity about these two stories is that both of the stories are set out as if you knew something ominous, peculiar or supernatural was going to happen as the story unfolds. Dickens creates a very good structure for the story "The Signalman", full of queries, puzzling moments and supernatural situations. All of these factors built up the story and prepared the reader for what was to come late in the story. Throughout the passage Dickens explores the setting and characters views in order to build up the suspense, which makes the tale so chilling, and weird.
- Word count: 1409
Compare The Whole Towns Sleeping with A Terribly Strange Bed, focusing on the techniques used by each writer to build up tension and suspense.
In "A Terribly Strange Bed" tension is constantly being built up throughout the whole of the story. At the opening of the story you have the initial build up of tension which is then built upon when the protagonist enters a new gambling house which is unknown to both the reader and protagonist and therefore could mean danger for the protagonist. To add even more to this tension the gambling house is described as a "blackguard of a place". If the reader is unfamiliar with this term this could create tension as we the readers associate black with darkness and fear.
- Word count: 1411