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How does William Blatty convey the theme of supernatural and how does he present the elements of the supernatural in ways which work?

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Specialist Study Sarah-Jane Slattery Galashiels Academy Word Count: How does William Blatty convey the theme of supernatural and how does he present the elements of the supernatural in ways which work? William Blatty's novel 'The Exorcist' is said to be a landmark in the history of popular literature and it can still cause hype when it is being discussed. This novel was made into a terrifying film that was banned for many years because of its horrifying content. Although people's attitudes and perspective of what is scary has changed, it still manages to cause controversy after almost thirty years. Due to the impact that this supernatural novel, which unearths Satanism and possession, still has, I was influenced to read it. ...read more.


The evil is in the form of a demon called Pazuzu whose dominion was sickness and disease. This conventional prologue, which is suggesting supernatural evil is as ancient as the ruins of the demons temple, creates an enemy character who is more powerful and knowledgeable than the usual rivalry in a battle. This ancient evil causes so much fear to a priest on the archaeological dig of these temples that he is filled with terror and dread at the thought of having to face it, as illustrated in the quote "... his heart encased in the icy convection that soon he would have to face an ancient enemy." I believe that the element of evil be age ancient and everlasting is effective in conveying the theme of supernatural. ...read more.


This makes the supposedly distant subject of supernatural occurrences seem a bit closer to home and having somebody become possessed is not such a far fetched idea. Thus resulting in the theme contributing to making this novel more believable and therefore more frightening. Blatty is successful in building up events into a dramatic climax, this technique is very effective in securing the readers attention. An example of Blatty creating a climaxing situation is the part in the novel when the little girl says that she hears voices and has an imaginary friend with the innocent sounding name of Captain Howdy. This is an effective technique Blatty uses to leads the reader into the novel ...read more.

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