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

The Signalman and the Red Room are well known examples of nineteenth century ghost stories. Write a critical comparison of these two stories. What do you consider to be their strengths and which of the stories do you enjoy the most.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Saadia Rashid 17th May 2003 English Essay The Signalman and the Red Room are well known examples of nineteenth century ghost stories. Write a critical comparison of these two stories. What do you consider to be their strengths and which of the stories do you enjoy the most. Charles Dickens and H.G. Wells were both living during the Victorian era. The many radical changes in this era tainted their writing. Both Wells and Dickens were against the social situation at the time, this is evident in their writings. Although Britain had many colonies, wealth was not circulating amongst its people. This made life unbearable for some. Dickens and Wells spoke out against this and were concerned with the fate of human society. Dickens wrote many books plays and pamphlets, as well as giving talks, on the effect of an unjust society. Wells, also thought about the effect of an unjust society, but was also interested in science. In The Signalman much of the story takes place outside, this outside atmosphere is embellished with plenty of detail giving it a hesitant environment. ...read more.

Middle

An array of powerful adjectives is utilized by Wells, such as "grand staircase", "great window" this exaggerates the visitor's journey down the corridor. The castle seems gargantuan in size and seems to overwhelm the visitor. Also there is not much dialogue in The Red Room. This is mainly because the visitor is on his own with his mind. Therefore the sentences contain a lot of feelings, we know of his fear, and the way he tries to "restore his nerves". This also helps the reader to understand what is going on in the mind of the character. In the Signalman both characters are essential to the plot. This is because the visitor is outside the problem and tells us the feelings and actions of the signalman. When the signalman is telling of his feelings and incidences he lays "his hand upon my arm", this is what the visitor tells us. The signalman is also essential to the plot as he is the character that sees the spectre. The visitor is narrating the story; he gives us a lot of detail about the actual Signalman. ...read more.

Conclusion

This is evident as at the end he describes what haunted him in the room, "Fear! Fear that will have no light", this is as if he is now able to comprehend what haunted him in the red room. I enjoyed The Red Room more than The Signalman, because I like the pace of the story. The Signalman is quite difficult to grasp the full meaning of the story, for example the visitors own words "For Gods sake, clear the way!" are used by the train driver. The story meaning is intricate to comprehend as the spectre seen by the signalman is actually showing him his death. That is why every time the spectre was seen by the signalman it was always followed by a death. I also like The Red Room because there is a lot of detail given in the setting of the story. The reader is inevitably waiting to hear of a spectre at the end of the story, but the lacks of a spectre does not give a dull finish. The ending perfectly compliments the rest of the story as the fear is personified and makes the ending very unusual. The story has an unusual twist at the end which gives it a far from clich� conclusion. ...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. In what ways is "The Signalman" a typical ghost story?

    natural world" like he had entered hell, then he goes on to describe the sounds the wind blowing through the telegraph wires make:- "But do listen for a moment to the wind.... and the wild harp it makes of the telegraph wires" Language like this adds plenty of atmosphere to this already evil location and gives it a supernatural air.

  2. In your study of ghost stories, what have you learnt about the ghost story ...

    through the passes and there is a brief pause before he drops dead. The technique used by H.G.Wells to create tension is suspense. Each individual ending has its own unexpected happening.

  1. A Comparison Between 'The Red Room' and 'The Signalman'

    This closing sentence brings together and summarises the story very well by bringing back a past event or phrase. In 'The Red Room' on the other hand, it gives a totally different aspect, as this closing paragraph really reinforces the Victorian beliefs in supernatural beings.

  2. Which of the Two Horror Stories: "The Monkey's Paw" or "The Signalman" Do you ...

    Again in our minds we imagine a horrific deformed Herbert and the pauses make the horror more striking. There are only two main characters in "The Signalman", the narrator (who is played by Dickens) and the signalman. While we are told little about the narrator, the signalman is portrayed as

  1. Comparative Essay between "The Signalman" and "The Pit and the Pendulum"

    This keeps the reader "glued" to the book. For example, when the narrator woke up in the dungeon, Poe didn't get straight to the point, but waited by describing what was already known to hold 'taut' the strain of suspense and aversion.

  2. Discuss the effectiveness of the ghost stories by Dickens, Hughes and Rhys. Show some ...

    Also there is alliteration where the Vs are repeated. Also, Dickens positions them in such a way so that they end up on top of each other and then the internal rhyming of the two phrases stands out. We then have the phrases 'oncoming rush', '...force to draw me down' and 'vapour as rose.'

  1. Compare and contrast the two stories "The Signalman" and "The Red Room" explaining which ...

    atmosphere around the tracks that is reflected in the peculiar behaviour of the signalman. These details combined with the cold wind we are told about and the loneliness of the place create a feeling dread and foreboding that sets the mood for the rest of the story.

  2. Explain what makes a good mystery story, based on your understanding of 'The Red ...

    The young man is arrogant and curious, one man has a withered arm, another with a bad back and the woman just stares into the fire. This creates mystery as you wonder what the young man looks like. These attributes are chosen by the author to show a side of the character they only want you to see.

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