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The central emotion of the Gothic is to horrify and terrify - Do you agree that the primary aim of the Gothic novel is to horrify and terrify?

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Introduction

The central emotion of the Gothic is to horrify and terrify. Do you agree that the primary aim of the Gothic novel is to horrify and terrify? The central emotions evoked by Gothic literature are horror and fear for non-gothic people, but I feel that the principal aim of Gothic literature is to express the individuality of this resilient subculture. Every novel has the Gothic elements of an atmosphere of mystery and suspense, supernatural or inexplicable events, excess of emotions and the metonymy of gloom and horror. These elements do try to evoke fear of the supernatural; however, the usage of these characteristics is to portray a deeper purpose rather than just to scare the readers. The difference between Terror and Horror is the difference between awful apprehension and sickening realization: between the smell of death and stumbling against a corpse. ...read more.

Middle

Elements of horror render the reader incapable of resolution and expose the reader's mind to a state of inevitable confusion and chaos. Representing the Craft of Terror, Ann Radcliffe's The Mysteries of Udolpho causes the reader to imagine and cross-examine those imaginings. She uses sound and description of surroundings to suggest something that will happen instead of describing it exactly. It gives a feeling of dread and leaves imagination to react upon the few hints that has been dropped. It permits one's imagination to run wild, creating a rush of fear through one. However, Radcliffe is trying to put across the idea of fear of the unknown, People tend to scare themselves even though the lack of tangible evidence. It is somewhat a straightaway conclusion that the lack of knowledge of something might actually be harmful. ...read more.

Conclusion

Several authors have conveyed the idea that too much knowledge is not always good. Using gothic tendencies, she portrays to the reader that knowledge can be horrifying to a person as they realize and learn all that they do not have but want. The same horror the reader feels when learning about the monster is the same horror the monster feels for him. The idea of knowledge can also be seen in The Monk where Ambrosio murdered Elvira when she caught him red-handed trying to rape her daughter, Antonia. As shown, the primary aim in gothic literature is more than to evoke fear in the reader. The authors use gothic characteristics of grotesque characters and uncanny situations to warn the reader about a deeper theme. The terror felt by the reader mimics the terror another character is feeling in dealing with the hidden theme. ...read more.

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