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In this essay I will compare the two protagonists in the stories The "Signalman" and "The Foghorn".

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Introduction

Matthew Walker 10KL An essay to compare the two protagonists The Signalman and The Foghorn In this essay I will compare the two protagonists in the stories The "Signalman" and "The Foghorn". Although the stories were written one hundred years apart they have many similarities. Firstly, The Signalman appears wary but well-educated who has thrown his life away. This may well be why he is stuck in a little booth by himself controlling trains. This setting is very simple. The setting is simple because The Signalman has his own small room, which is described like a dungeon. The quotations "A crooked prolongation of this great dungeon" and "a solitary and dismal a place as ever I saw" show this. He is alone in the booth with his thoughts and only a passing train for company. It is in this setting where he meets his apparitions. When The Signalman sees the ghost he appears scared, "his eyes prominent and strained". The quotation "shows a latent fear" suggest this. Short sentences, "what's wrong", "what's happened", "where". These short sentences try to create a feeling of fear. This builds up suspense for the reader. ...read more.

Middle

I think that Mcdunn's job is very similar to The Signalman's as they both protect and look after other people's lives. Even the settings have their similarities as they work alone looking out for dangers. Mcdunn also takes his job very seriously. Mcdunn and his narrator are the only people who know about the sea monster. If Mcdunn told somebody they might try to catch the monster and it might kill somebody so Mcdunn has to stop people from getting harmed. "Come on. I got something special I been saving up to tell you". This shows that after three months Mcdunn is about to tell his narrator about the sea monster. "So I better prepare you". After writing about Mcdunn and The Signalman and their jobs I have concluded that Mcdunn and The Signalman are very similar. The similarities are in the jobs they do. They both protect the lives of others. This shows that both The Signalman and Mcdunn lived similar lives in a lonely setting. I will now look at the two character's philosophy on life. I feel that The Signalman's view on life is "he lives in the present" meaning he does not believe on dwelling on past mistakes. ...read more.

Conclusion

The Signalman does not know the reason the ghost is there. He does not want it to be there. Whereas Mcdunn does, he sees the sea monster as a friend and he doesn't appear to have many of them. Mcdunn thinks that the sea monster is drawn to the foghorn "calling to you with a long neck like your neck sticking way up out of the water". He understands the sea monster unlike The Signalman who doesn't know what the apparition is telling him. To conclude, I really enjoyed reading both stories but I think that "The Signalman" had a much deeper meaning and twist in the end which made me think whilst "The Foghorn" just had a sad ending. I could really feel for The Signalman because he knew some thing bad was about to happen but felt powerless because he did not know how to deal with it. The ending is not how I imagined and therefore made the story more entertaining than The Foghorn. Although "The Foghorn" had a sad ending with the sea monster returning to the deep, it did not create the same emotion. They were both entertaining in their own right and although they were written a century apart the stories were not that different. ...read more.

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