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Explore The Ways That Each Story Brought The Readers Of Their Time Into Contact With The Supernatural.

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Explore The Ways That Each Story Brought The Readers Of Their Time Into Contact With The Supernatural By Tom George-Pain 10PR The First story I shall look at is "The Signalman" by Charles Dickens. Charles Dickens was born in 1812 and died in 1870, so this story was probably written in the 1840's or 1850's. People then were very rational and thought that everything should have a good explanation, and if it didn't it wasn't real. In his story Dickens tries to tell a ghost story that doesn't have an explanation for the goings on, so the readers can use their imaginations. In the story Dickens creates a liminal space which is the cutting. The cutting is where the signalman lives, it is a hole surrounded by two parallel walls which trains run through, "The cutting was extremely deep". This creates a supernatural effect for the reader because the signalman is cut of from the whole world and lives on his own. This setting could be very scary for the readers because if a ghost does appear you are trapped and there is no escape. Dickens uses emotive language to create a supernatural atmosphere for the reader. He uses such words as "Gloomy", "Depressing" and "Barbarous". This helps the readers create the setting in their mind and imagine the atmosphere in the cutting. The words he uses are all dark and ghostly words, so it sets a dark and ghostly setting. ...read more.


We find out later that it was Burton Duff's ghost. When Brower saw the figure he was "Filled with buckshot", he couldn't move. The figure then lifted up its arm and pointed back in the direction of the jail and without hesitating Brower starts walking back. Bierce describes Brower as a "Courageous criminal", but when he saw the figure he didn't seem very Courageous because he does what the figure wants. At the end of the story the figure of Burton Duff takes Brower to the Jail. When Brower enters, Duff's body is on the table and know-one follows him in to the room. This brings the readers into contact with the supernatural because they think that Duff was alive and it is quite a spooky ending because the readers do not know what happens next. The third story I shall look at is "Shadow" By Edgar Allen Poe. Out of all of the stories I read I found "Shadow", very hard to understand the plot. That is because Poe concentrated more on the mood and atmosphere than the plot. This would help the readers come into contact with the supernatural because in "Shadow" it is not the plot that makes the reader interested in the story, it is the words that Poe uses to describe what's happening, "Pestilence", "Illumined", "Countenance" and "Enshrouded", are all words that he uses. ...read more.


In this story, nothing supernatural happens, but there is a supernatural theme, that the narrator wants to keep M. Valdemar alive after he has died by mesmerism. He manages to do this but when he undoes the spell M. Valdemar falls to pieces. This story has a good plot and good mood and atmosphere as most of the stories only have one such as "Shadow" which has a lot of mood and atmosphere, but not a good plot. It had a good mood and atmosphere because Poe used lots of emotive language and he does it in "M. Valdemar" he uses such words as "Rotted", "Detestable", and "Hideous". In this story there is not really a liminal space. I have discovered that Poe does not really have liminal spaces in his stories. In "Shadow" there is not a particular place that he has described. Other writers like Bierce and Dickens always have liminal spaces, e.g. the cutting and the shack on the mountain. This helps the readers come into contact with the supernatural. Even though Poe does not have liminal spaces, his stories still bring the readers of their time into contact with the supernatural because he uses more powerful language, e.g. "Detestable Putridity". The semantic field of this story is to do with medicine, e.g. "Alive", "Dead", "Nurses", "Doctor" and "Health". For a reader to come into contact with the supernatural in a story you need to have a good and interesting plot, lots of powerful emotive language and have a liminal space where the reader can feel trapped and there is no escape. ...read more.

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