This word can be perceived as a synonymous for barbarous and dreadful. Similarly, the horror genre also has factors of monstrosity and dread. The “Gothic” style of architecture was famous in the middle ages and has been found on many cathedrals such as Notre Dame. Historians would describe this style as “gothic” to suggest their negative opinion of the architecture, that it was tasteless and dry. Instead of conforming to this perception, people were only led to believe the word to mean “dark and ominous”.
The very idea that such an evil and frightening creature could exist shocked and aroused the curiosity of many people at this time. Society in the last century was extremely corrupt and immoral, the novel ‘Frankenstein’ reflects this, in which an innocent creature is shunned by society because of it’s abnormal and somewhat shocking appearance. Nowadays, people are still enticed by fear, they have a curiosity for the supernatural, evil and frightening. Although modern day society is supposedly politically correct, we are still an immoral society and many of us would treat a creature like Frankenstein’s creation or a vampire like Dracula like a monster. In this way, the novels still have social significance.
During this time Gothic writers wrote about the true evils and that even the nicest person could have some of the worse demons. Gothic writing was usually written in mysterious and ominous tine. Most Gothic novels were filled with death and terror. The authors of Gothic novels most commonly filled their books with omens and foreshadows, showing the dark side of mankind. American Gothic stories also wrote about the supernatural such as ghosts, monsters, women in distress,
Using Gothic Characteristics to Portray the Theme of Knowledge in American Gargoyles, Johnny Mnemonic, Frankenstein, Good Country People, and Cyberpunk Gothic literature has been interpreted, and even criticized by many people as just being scary stories. They feel the author's only purpose for using gloomy settings and grotesque characters is to horrify the reader. This however is rarely true of Gothic literature, instead an author will use these characteristics to portray a deeper purpose rather than to just scare the reader. This is true of all genres of gothic literature including classical, southern, and cyber literature. One theme that has been prevalent throughout gothic history is that of knowledge.
Gothic Literature has several distinctive features. For one ‘it often focuses on the dark, evil side of human nature, it asserts that everyone has a dark side and in these stories we find the characters giving in to that darkness and doing dreadful and horrific things’ . Firstly, and rather morbidly, we are told by the narrator of the ‘The Black Cat’ by Edgar Allan Poe, that he is going to die the next day, so we are immediately established that this tale is a death-bed confession, which adds to convincing the reader of the tale’s truth – why would a man set to die lie, is the obvious conclusion of a reader. According to himself – a rather biased source- the narrator grew up a kind, loving man, he had a ‘docility and humanity’ and was kind to all people, and animals. However the story takes a gothic twist and due to alcoholism... ... middle of paper ... ...the time of their publication.
Both plots contain elements that shock and amaze the reader by introducing them to ideas not normally seen in most novels. The dark nature in both stories can be startling, but are the central components and are used to make for a more interesting and intriguing story for the reader. Though a horror story is more common in this day and age, a story to the effect of Frankenstein was unheard of in 1818 when the book was written. Both novels have a powerful effect on the mind and imagination of the reader. In Frankenstein before the creation Shelley says, "Who shall conceive the horrors of my secret toil as I dabbled among the unhallowed damps of the grave or tortured the living animal to animate the lifeless clay?"(p.
In Gothic novels, horror is often created by personal memories, historical events, uncontrollable subconscious and anything that people attempt to escape from. The symbolisation of horrible sources and even the embodiment of horror itself are rather common. Considering Romantic writers, Mary Shelley and Jane Austen enjoy high reputation in composing Gothic novels. Yet, these two authors have distinct understanding of Gothic. As a result, the way and purpose they apply horror to their fictional stories are entirely different.
The two Gothic novels, Dracula and Frankenstein, introduced two of the most terrifying characters throughout all of literature. Bram Stoker, the author of Dracula, and Mary Shelley, the author of Frankenstein, both present elements of terror and create a tense mood and a frightening picture. In both of these novels the other characters are not able to see these evil creatures actions. Although both of these novels depict truly evil minds, Dracula is far more terrifying than Frankenstein due in part to its bloodthirsty vampires, mysterious deaths, and dark gothic tone. Dracula is indeed the more bone-chilling story of the two.
Such descriptive words as shroud, grave-worms and corpse all create a sense of reality. They are harsh and produce internal horror. In all I think that Frankenstein can be classed as classically gothic novel. It contains continuous references to typically gothic features. Such scenes as the creation of the creature and the frequently occurring deaths all help to analyse the novel.
They mostly use catching background music and horrible settings to create a sense of horror. Mary Shelley creates a sense of horror through the characters, settings and the language. From the beginning of the story, the audience's speculate that there was a reason behind Victor Frankenstein's interest to the anatomy of science. " A mind of moderate capacity, which closely pursues one study, Must infallibly arrive at great proficiency in that study." This creates a sense of horror because it suggests that Frankenstein is obsessed with the subject.