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

Pre-1914 Drama

Extracts from this document...


Examine the settings that the writers have chosen for their stories 'The Signalman', 'The Man with the Twisted Lip' and 'The Red Room'. Consider the effects that each write has created and how they contribute to the atmosphere. During the Victorian era, at the time of the industrial revolution and of unprecedented change, people still liked to go back and read short gothic horror stories which all effectively managed to terrify them. 'The Red Room' written by H.G. Wells, 'The Signalman' written by Charles Dickens and 'The Man with the Twisted Lip' by Arthur Conan Doyle, all rely highly on the use of setting to convey mood and atmosphere to keep the reader hooked until the end. 'The Signalman' keeps the reader in suspense by developing the spectre through out the story and slowly revealing the Signalman's experiences with the spectre. The end is a dramatic anti climax as the Signalman is killed. The story has led us on a path but yet we never find out who or what the spectre really is, only revealing that it appears when an accident is going to happen. 'The Red Room' also uses the supernatural in its mystery and suspense. This story as well as using a developing sequence of spooky events during the night to keep the reader hooked, uses the characters own mind to scare him, discovering that the only thing to fear is fear its self. ...read more.


This is built up in "the gloomier entrance to a black tunnel". Oppressive imagery is introduced in "a barbarous, depressing and forbidding air". The fact that the air was being personified in this way is so that Dickens could make a more realistic impact on the reader and that the atmosphere is more frightening and menacing. The setting of 'The Man with the Twisted Lip' would have been the most modern setting to the people reading the book. It would have been the most realistic for those reading the story which would have made it better because the audience could have related to it more. The setting is first mentioned in Doctor Watson's home at the beginning. "The hour when a man gives his first yawn", wife doing her "needlework", leaves his "armchair" and "cheery sitting-room." This suggests a happy, warm, inviting home. This is significant because it is a complete contrast to the next location. The Victorian domesticity makes this home safe and predictable. The next main setting that Sir Conan Doyle writes about is a description of east London where Doctor Watson is heading: "a vile alley lurking". The word lurking gives the impression of danger, it makes you think you are being watched. When Watson is travelling in the cab, the lanterns on a cart "throw out two golden tunnels of yellow light, through the gloom." This gives the impression of smoky conditions with eerie yellow beams of light being the only penetration of the smog. ...read more.


The tunnel in 'The Signalman' is described as cold and in 'The Red Room' the corridors of the castle are cold and damp as the narrator walks thorough. But 'The Man with the Twisted Lip' does not use any such cold imagery. This is because it is not a ghost or supernatural story, it's a detective story. The other two use cold to suggest a supernatural presence or a ghost. But there is no ghost or supernatural being in 'The Man with the Twisted Lip' so cold imagery is not used. All three stories use darkness to create suspense and to scare the reader. In 'The Man with the Twisted Lip' the alleys and streets are described as dark and vile. Also the steps leading to the opium den and the den itself are described as dark and 'gloomy'. 'The Signalman' also uses lots of dark imagery to describe the tunnel. And in 'The Red Room' the passageways and rooms are all dark and gloomy. All the stories use darkness to convey a feeling of unknown. If you cannot see everything in a room or space, then you don't know what is there, this creates suspense and frightens the reader because they begin to speculate what evil creature or person may be lurking in the shadows. As I have analysed there are comparables and contrasts in the settings which the writers has chosen in 'The Signalman', 'The Man with the Twisted Lip' and 'The Red Room'. They have, undeniably, all used many techniques to ensure that the settings are unearthly, discomforting and disturbing to the reader. ...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 Miscellaneous 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 Miscellaneous essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    The Techniques Used by Wells in The Red Room to Create a Feeling of ...

    4 star(s)

    It is as if the three old people are washing their hands of the responsibility of the young man. They feel it is their duty, like guardians, to warn the man of what they believe may be his death. Another use of repetition is slightly later on, when the old woman repeats, "this night of all nights."

  2. Marked by a teacher

    Siddhartha's Social Journey- Hermann Hesse

    4 star(s)

    It was by the river that Siddhartha met Govinda, his old friend. At first Govinda hadn't recognized Siddhartha who was wearing the clothes and shoes of a rich man. He looked at Siddhartha very doubtfully, and when he left he bowed to Siddhartha as one does to a man of rank and went on his way.

  1. Marked by a teacher

    How is suspense created in The Signalman?

    3 star(s)

    Without knowing any of the above, it automatically creates confusion at the same time as starting the book with readers wanting to know more and establishing suspense. This makes the reader feel perplexed and uncertain as it makes the protagonist and his focus appear cut-off and because it's beyond normal experience and makes all that's already unknown cut-off also.

  2. Frankenstein, . Focusing on the writer's use of language to describe the setting and ...

    Frankenstein's horror is captured in the quote "but now that I have finished the beauty of the dream has vanished and breathless horror and disgust filled my heart." This also captures his anxiety. When he brings the monster to life he feels no empathy for him and totally rejects him;

  1. How does Arthur Miller use techniques to show Eddie's changing relationships

    Interestingly, the stage directions of Catherine's reply (with an edge of anger, embarrassed before Rodolfo) reveal how Catherine is more afraid of Rodolfo's judgement of her, than Eddies. Following that conversation, Eddie has become impatient and expresses his dirty and twisted feelings towards his niece.

  2. How Stevenson Uses Setting and Place in The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and ...

    Hyde's reaction to the axe blows is 'a dismal screech, as of mere animal terror'. The weather is clear as if this is an opportunity to rid the air of its foulness permanently, a sort of inkling about how perfect the air could be if this person no longer existed.

  1. gothic horror

    In the beginning she is incredibly calm and polite, "said his wife, soothingly" though, after her son's death her behaviour becomes more and more unreliable. "'Go and get it and wish" cried his wife quivering with excitement" She becomes very irrepressible and Mr White turns out to be "afraid of ..."

  2. What methods do the writers use in order to create mood, atmosphere and character ...

    This makes us wonder whether the narrator will become trapped or have to escape from down there at some point during the story. The narrator also compares this railway cutting to a great dungeon which reaffirms the connotations of being trapped and goes on to say "a dripping wet wall

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