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What techniques does H G Wells use to create fear in" The Red Room"?

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Student Name: Isa Abdur Rahman Course Work Unit: Pre-Twentieth Century Prose Subject: English & English Literature * What techniques does H G Wells use to create fear in "The Red Room"? 'The Red Room', authored by the pen of H G Wells, is a detailed account of an encounter that occurred between an individual, and a force, of which no explanation lies in the understanding of man. The author, one who is greatly renowned for his commendable writings, uses the title, in collaboration with the setting, the characters and the diction in this piece to ignite a raging fear in the mind of the reader. The title of this tale, 'The Red room', thus commences his efforts, as it, in itself indicates exorcism, or a prevalent evil derived from the word 'red'. The 'room' itself further magnifies this suspense as the sprit is confined to a certain area, and thus increasing its concentration to a specific place. Furthermore 'The red room', also rhymes with, 'The bed room', showing a permanent residence of the presence, yet moreover, as the bed room is one used during the night, the sprit, only at night, becomes active. The author also applies alliteration, in the title to further strengthen this. Additional connotations to this title also encircle blood, danger, wrath, murder and brute anger. Amongst the numerous and varying methods employed by the author, one has been infixed to depict the key character in as one in excess of confidence, possibly even arrogance. ...read more.


By it, the author is able to link deeds of the past to present consequences. The story itself, ceases with the quotation that fear will exist, 'so long as this house of sin endures'. Also, the condition of any ancient castle provides eeriness, as its prehistoric floor, and bound to 'creek', as so are its doors. Also its 'long draughty subterranean passages were chilly, and cold', indicating little had been present here, consequently cold, not only physically, but mentally and spiritually also, as in the lack of life. Also, the manner in which this specific castle has been built indicates that it has left but few windows for light to enter its depths. This is illustrated by the fact that it contained numerous 'shadowy corners'. The sense of fear is built upon this as the reader acknowledges that even a slight breeze could equate the narrator having no light, as his candles were his only source. The red room itself was preceded by a 'spiral staircase'. As one climbs stairs such as these, he is unable to foretell what awaits his a few steps ahead. Therefore, the reader lies in awaits a punch line to land heavily upon him, although this does not happen. Also, the sheer scal, or size of the castle adds to the horror. This is displayed by the directions given to the narrator in order to aid his journey to the red room. ...read more.


This constant circle is solely ended in the climax of the protagonist evading consciousness in the frenzy that consequates the unbearable horror before him. Also, events may have appeared different to under no fear differential, the narrator, under the pressure he is under, sees even the most trivial of movements some how perilous. This is evident as the mere flame of a candle appeared to be 'dancing', as though it had been possessed by some demon, yet its sway was only due to some motion that had initiated a breeze. The description of the being contained in the red room is also ingeniously presented. He is described of as not a physical being, nor a spiritual presence, yet as a shadow, that was able to enact actions of the beings prior mentioned. This builds great fear as the reader thus looks away from the page of the story, and examines his surrounds for similar signs. An astonishing method that carries great effect. In all, the fear built by H G Wells in 'The Red room' is unlike any other. The author entirely exploits the characters, the setting, his selective diction and even the title to create fear in the reader. His methods are not only effective, but exemplary. He succeeds entirely in creating a story of fear, and one that the reader will find pleasure to read on a night in which he lays solitarily, and has none to seek refuge from, of its horrors. 1 ...read more.

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