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

Prose study of 'The Signalman' by Charles Dickens,' The Superstitious Man's Story' by Thomas Hardy and 'Night Fears' by L.P. Hartley.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

English Coursework Prose Study by Joanna Eglin. The three stories that I shall be looking at in this study are; ' The Signalman' by Charles Dickens,' The Superstitious Man's Story' by Thomas Hardy and 'Night Fears' by L.P. Hartley. The stories are all very similar in contex; they portray an atmosphere of tension and suspense. I shall be looking at the different ways in which the characters and stories develop. The first story I shall be looking at is 'The Signalman.' In this story, the narrator is in fact the author Charles Dickens. From the beginning of the story, the setting is of great importance. The fact that none of the characters is named makes the setting stand out more. The story is set in the nineteenth century and takes place, in and around a deep railway cutting. The cutting is described as 'Clammy stone' and being 'Extremely deep and precipitous.' Dickens description gives the impression of a damp, isolated and inaccessible place to be. The narrator is standing at the top of the cutting, described as 'It became oozier and wetter as I went down.' ...read more.

Middle

I found this story to be more of a psychological study, than an actual ghost story. The second story I shall be looking at is 'The Superstitious Man's Story.' It is centred on a small village, which is set in the West Country. A lot of dialect is used throughout and is evident from the very first line. 'The Superstitious Man's Story,' which is set partly indoors and partly outdoors, though the actual setting, plays little relevance, unlike in 'The Signalman.' It is also relevant from the first paragraph that this is going to be a ghost story. 'You could feel when he came near 'ee,' there seemed to be something clammy in the air.' All these quotes represent tension and suspense. There are many characters in this story, each adding something to the plot. Although the characters all seem to know one another and are an important aspect to the story, the important thing in the story is what happens, not who it actually happens to. The main character in the story is William Privett. He is described as a 'Curious, silent man,' it is also said when he came ' near'ee, you felt clammy,' also 'as if a cellar door was being closed by your elbow.' ...read more.

Conclusion

He never returned.Right up to the very end, the stranger seems to be a figment of the night watchmans imagination. However, the mention of footsteps in the text, reveal otherwise. The night watchman I feel commited suicide at the end of the story, I think because the stranger was playing with his mind, though because the story, has a twist to it, the death could have happened in numerous ways. I found this to be a psychological study than an actual ghost story. Out of the three stories I have looked at, I found,' The Signalman' the most exhilarating. I could not help but notice, that the story has a somewhat modern sentiment, even though it was clearly, wrote in the nineteenth century. Charles Dickens used a wide range of vocabulary, which created the setting marvellously and kept the reader in suspense to the very end. I found 'The Superstitious Man's Story,' used quite complex language, which made the story difficult to follow. I found 'Night Fears,' easy to read, as the language and vocabulary used throughout this text, was more simplex. However, I thought the author to be of a much lower calibre, than Charles Dickens. All the stories created tention and suspense, and added an unexpected twist at the end. ...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 The Signalman 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 The Signalman essays

  1. Literature G.C.S.E Prose Critique

    The exposition of 'The Signalman' is a combination of plunging straight into the story's action with, ' "Halloa! Below there!" ' and then the posing of a puzzle; 'When he heard a voice thus calling to him, he was standing at the foot of his box, with a flag in his hand, furled round its short pole.

  2. GSCE ENGLISH LITERATURE COURSEWORK - PRE 1900 PROSE

    this by saying that if anything was thrown at him, it would pass through me, this explains to the reader that he is a ghost as the most common characteristic of a ghost is being able to pass through things.

  1. Examine how the theme of isolation and the supernatural are explored in 'The signalman', ...

    'The Signalman' has lots of information on life through the 19th century and how technology was changing. An example of this is the way in which trains were revolutionised and enabled people to travel around the country for a cheaper price in a small amount of time.

  2. Compare and contrast the ways in which Dickens and Hardy use superstitious beliefs and ...

    In her dream she sees her as a figure with "features shockingly distorted and wrinkled as by age" But then, the day after Rhoda is hampered by guilt and cannot help feeling overwhelmed by the kindness of Gertrude bringing her son new boots.

  1. Pre 20th Century Prose- A Christmas Carol and The Signalman.

    It is very hard to imagine the characters in this story: because they are underground and it will be dark. So the fact that the narrator has described the signalman as having a dark beard, and being a dark sallow man doesn't help the description of the signalman.

  2. Examine the ways in which Charles Dickens builds suspense in 'The Signalman'

    The words '"Halloa! Below there!"' are the main lines spoken in the piece and the reappearances of the spectre repeating the same action the hand across the face are also repeatedly mentioned. The bell, although described as 'little', is referred to quite often as is the 'red danger light', especially towards the end.

  1. Compare and Contrast "The Signalman" by Charles Dickens and "The Withered Arm" by Thomas ...

    The narrator speaks of what the signalman preached, and it is through this that we find out about the apparition. The only main characters portrayed in the story are the signalman and the narrator. We know little of their past, in fact all we know about them is a little

  2. Discuss the ways in which Charles Dickens, Thomas Hardy and HG Wells create tension ...

    The Signalman replies "I believe I used to be so, but I am troubled, sir, I am troubled. The Narrator enquires for the reason why, The Signalman is reluctant to talk as it was hard to explain, but promises to tell the Narrator on their next meeting.

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