• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

In this essay I will be looking at how successful Oscar Wilde was at creating a gothic novel. I will be using Edgar Alan Poe's short story 'The Fall of the House of Usher' and the film 'Bram Stokers, Dracula' and the

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

The Picture of Dorian Gray. In this essay I will be looking at how successful Oscar Wilde was at creating a gothic novel. I will be using Edgar Alan Poe's short story 'The Fall of the House of Usher' and the film 'Bram Stokers, Dracula' and the earlier version 'Nosferatu' as reference pieces to the gothic form. Other pieces I shall be looking at are Goya's 'The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters', and Henry Fuseli's 'The Nightmare'. What is gothic? The dictionary defines gothic as 'the style of architecture prevalent in Western Europe in the 12th - 16th centuries and revived in the 18th - 19th centuries characterized by pointed arches'. But it is much more than that; gothic represents freedom and human nature at its best. Gothic is action without reaction and feeling without consequence. It allows use to indulge our most secretive fantasies, this is one the main reasons the gothic genre came back in the 18th century because the upper classes were becoming bored with just sitting and going out all the time, with the only worry of what other people thought of them, but when gothic came back in it allowed them to indulge in most secret desires such as bestiality, vampires, homosexuality and other erotic pass times. Gothic architecture is castles and churches, these usually have large tall pillars and high spiked roof tops, the idea was when you prayed the pray floated up to g-d so if the roof was spiked at the top, the prays would build up and finally be projected towards the heavens. ...read more.

Middle

In this passage we find Dorian Gray quoting Lord Henry more and more for instance 'I felt that this grey, monstrous London of ours, ... as you once phrased it, must have something in store for me2.' The passage is also a classic gothic night adventure with nightmarish characters like the Jew. Within this theatre Dorian Gray finds he is falling for the young actress Sibyl Vane and proposes to her. Sibyl Vane refers to Dorian Gray as 'Prince Charming' this makes us think of fairy tales that are never far off from the idea of gothic with castles and evil etc. She falls in love with him. However she feels she cannot pretend her love on the stage now that she has found true love with Dorian Gray. Then after Dorian Gray casts her aside in a terribly cruel way. The next day Dorian Gray tries to correct his error with Sibyl Vane as he begins to see his portrait change, a line in the book that relates to his sudden urge to be good is when he says 'He would be able to follow his mind into its secret places. This portrait would be to him the most magical of mirrors3' this is very familiar to Goya's painting 'The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters', but just after finishing his apology letter to Sibyl Vane, Lord Henry enters to tell him that she had killed herself, this relates to his family history which is very gothic, with the romantic marriage, duels to the death, plotting parents, suicide of young brides and orphans. ...read more.

Conclusion

In other words, one can argue that Dorian Gray's belief that his portrait reflects the state of his soul violates the principles of aesthetics since, within that philosophy, art has no moral component. In other gothic stories we have studied, we have seen that Oscar Wilde was very successful at creating a gothic novel and that I can now understand why it was so ahead of its time. When we look at 'Nosferatu' and Bram Stokers 'Dracula' we not only see the gore and the vampirism that the movie is about, we see the love aspect and the romance associated with other genres that aren't gothic. When you study gothic fully you do realise that it is the dramatic romance and the freedom that make gothic what it is, a perfect genre for the people who wish to indulge their darkest fantasies or just want a bone chilling read for the holidays. In 'Dracula' and 'Nosferatu' we see gothic set pieces like the old castle, the good and evil sides of human nature with damsels in distress begin rescued by their true love. In the end gothic is either something you live by or something that you enjoy every so often. But who ever you are there is a macabre fascination for this insight into the taboo of love and evil combined. By Raphael Yadgaroff Rtpu. 1 'The Picture of Dorian Gray' by Oscar Wilde. 2 'The Picture of Dorian Gray' by Oscar Wilde. 3 Ibid. 4 Ibid. Raphael Yadgaroff Rtpu ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Bram Stoker section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Bram Stoker essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Write about Chapter 1 of Bram Stoker's Dracula as an introduction to the rest ...

    4 star(s)

    Jonathan is to rest before setting out the next day for the Borgo Pass, where the Count's coach will be waiting for him. The landlord and his wife are visibly distressed by Jonathan's intentions to go to Dracula's castle. Although they cannot understand each other's languages and must communicate in

  2. Marked by a teacher

    To what extent can thethree female characters in Bram Stoker's "Dracula" be compared to ...

    4 star(s)

    with his work, and this shows us that she is a devoted wife. Unlike Lucy, she is not most noteworthy for her physical beauty, which spares Mina her friend's fate of being transformed into a voluptuous devil. Her sexuality remains enigmatic throughout the whole of the novel, however she does

  1. Dracula: a novel of fin de siècle fear?

    a symbolic outsider onto which can be projected a range of contemporary anxieties. The novel was published in 1897, the year of the second Colonial Conference and during the period of 'high imperialism', and Arata has suggested that in Dracula the process is reversed, with the vampire threatening to colonise England7.

  2. Comparison of Gothic and Baroque Architecture.

    Bulidings reached unseen hights. At the end of the 12th century, another style developed, the "Rayonnants Gothic period. The origin of the name Rayonnants, is the radial-spoke shape (wheel like) of a rosewindow, like the one which deorates the north end of the Notre Dame kathedral.

  1. What boudaries does the vampire threaten? Discuss possible answers to this question with ...

    being used as prawns, mediators, of which Dracula's real goal is to vamp the males or take them under his control. It is "a displacement typical of both this text and the gender-anxious culture from which it arose, an implicitly homoerotic desire achieves representation as a monstrous heterosexuality, as a demonic inversion of normal gender relations" (Craft, p.

  2. HOW FAR AND IN WHAT WAYS DOES 'DRACULA' BELONG TO THE GOTHIC TRADITION?

    He asks one of the passengers what is meant, and Jonathan said 'He would not answer at first, but on learning that I was English he explained that it was a charm or guard against the evil eye. This was not very pleasant for me, just starting for unknown place

  1. Examine how the Aspects of Good and Evil are Presented/Portrayed in the film "Bram ...

    The lighting was very dark and dismal which reflects the era 'Old England' was going through. Especially in the fight, the figures were black and there was a dark red background which alludes to the thought of blood and death yet again.

  2. How Effective is the Tomb of Sarah as a piece of Gothic Horror?

    and sense of prophecy that this bears inspires fear in the reader; "for the sake of the dead and the welfare of the living let this sepulchre remain untouched." There are many "spooky" associations made with gothic horror tales and Loring stays true to these typicalities, involving many of the standard supernatural techniques.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work