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Gothic Literature.

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Presentation on theme: "Gothic Literature."— Presentation transcript:

1 Gothic Literature

2 Definition Gothic (goth-IK): a literary style usually portrayed fantastic tales dealing with horror, despair, the grotesque and other “dark” subjects. Gothic literature was named for the apparent influence of the dark gothic architecture of the period on the genre. Also, many of these Gothic tales took places in such “gothic” surroundings. open may people's eyes to the possible uses of the supernatural in literature.  Charles Dickens was one of the first to incorperate this approach into his literature

3 Gothic Elements Murder Death Suicide Ghosts Demons Gloomy settings
Family secrets Dungeons Curses Torture Vampires Spirits Castles Tombs Terror As you copy this chart down, also write down a specific example from A Tale of Two Cities that Dickens incorperated.

4 A few more Gothic elements
(Again, as you copy these down, write down a specific instance from A Tale of Two Cities.) Damsel in distress (frequently faints in horror) Secret corridors, passageways, or rooms Ancestral curses Ruined castles with graveyards nearby Sleep, dream, death-like states

5 Metonymy of gloom and terror
The metonymy of gloom and horror. Metonymy is a subtype of metaphor, in which something (like rain) is used to stand for something else (like sorrow). For example, the film industry likes to use metonymy as a quick shorthand, so we often notice that it is raining in funeral scenes.

6 Note the following metonymies that suggest mystery, danger, or the supernatural
wind, especially howling sighs, moans, howls, eerie sounds rain, especially blowing clanking chains doors grating on rusty hinges gusts of wind blowing out lights footsteps approaching doors suddenly slamming shut lights in abandoned rooms crazed laughter characters trapped in a room baying of distant dogs (or wolves?) ruins of buildings thunder and lightning

7 Importance of Setting The setting is greatly influential in Gothic novels. It not only evokes the atmosphere of horror and dread, but also portrays the deterioration of its world. The decaying, ruined scenery implies that at one time there was a thriving world. At one time the abbey, castle, or landscape was something treasured and appreciated. Now, all that lasts is the decaying shell of a once thriving dwelling.

8 Archetypal Characters
The Gothic hero becomes a sort of archetype as we find that there is a pattern to his characterization. There is always the protagonist, usually isolated either voluntarily or involuntarily. Then there is the villain, who is the epitome of evil, either by his (usually a man) own fall from grace, or by some implicit malevolence. The Wanderer, found in many Gothic tales, is the epitome of isolation as he wanders the earth in perpetual exile, usually a form of divine punishment.

9 Basic Plot Structure for a Gothic Novel
Action in the Gothic novel tends to take place at night, or at least in a claustrophobic, sunless environment. ascent (up a mountain high staircase); descent (into a dungeon, cave, underground chambers or labyrinth) or falling off a precipice; secret passage; hidden doors; the pursued maiden and the threat or rape or abduction; physical decay, skulls, cemeteries, and other images of death; ghosts; revenge; family curse; blood and gore; torture; the Doppelganger (evil twin or double); demonic possession; masking/shape-changing; black magic; madness; incest and other broken sexual taboos.

10 Other Gothic Novels The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1831) by Victor Hugo
The Fall of the House of Usher (1839) by Edgar Allan Poe "The Tell-Tale Heart" (1843) by Edgar Allan Poe (Full text at Wikisource) The Monkey's Paw (1902 by W. W. Jacobs (Full text at Project Gutenberg)

11 Modern Gothic Novels The Phantom of the Opera (1910) by Gaston Leroux (Full text at Project Gutenberg) "The Lottery" (1951) by Shirley Jackson I am Legend (1954) by Richard Matheson The Chocolate War (1974) By Robert Cormier Interview with the Vampire (1976) by Anne Rice The Shining (1977) by Stephen King The Little Friend (2002) by Donna Tartt Shutter Island (2003) by Dennis Lehane The Thirteenth Tale (2006) by Diane Setterfield

12 Other Gothic Writers Anne Rice Edgar Allan Poe Joyce Carol Oates
Stephen King Stephanie Meyer

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