Edgar Allen Poe was an English short-story writer whose work reflects the traditional Gothic conventions of the time that subverted the ambivalence of the grotesque and arabesque. Through thematic conventions of the Gothic genre, literary devices and his own auteur, Edgar Allan Poe’s texts are considered sublime examples of Gothic fiction. The Gothic genre within Poe’s work such as The Tell-Tale Heart, The Black Cat, and The Raven, arouse the pervasive nature of the dark side of individualism and the resulting encroachment of insanity. Gothic tales are dominated by fear and terror and explore the themes of death and decay. The Gothic crosses boundaries into the realm of the unknown, arousing extremes of emotion through the catalyst of disassociation and subversion of presence.
Instead of conforming to this perception, people were only led to believe the word to mean “dark and ominous”. Gothic architecture, with the foreboding atmosphere posed around it, correlates with the Gothic novel because it has been a prevalent backdrop to gothic novels in the 19th century, such as Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. These Gothic horror stories were some of the first examples of the horror genre, and are therefore vital for the understanding this field. In its historical context, the gothic horror genre is believed to have emerged as a response to a time of rational thought, the Enlightenment or the Age of Reason. This intellectual movement a... ... middle of paper ... ...tablished in the modern horror genre, thus it is practical to observe the archetypes of the Gothic novel as well.
Fear is a guiding force in both the short stories and the fixation the main characters with it only leads to their demise. With both terror and the supernatural being common conventions in most gothic fiction Gothic Fiction is a popular genre of literature that’s aim is to combine horror, fiction and romanticism. It originated in 18th century England and was said to have been founded through Horace Walpole’s novel “The Castle of Otranto” (Hughes). He claimed it to be a “found” medieval manuscript which added to its popular, although he later admitted it was a lie (Hughes). This mode of literature appears to have sprung out from Gothic architecture... ... middle of paper ... ...th possess conventions commonly demonstrated in gothic fiction surrounding setting, atmosphere and theme.
To quote one pundit: "...it presented, at first, a topic for argument and inflammatory rhetoric (Alfred Potter, from Gothic Horror p128 - Clive Bloom)." Despite (or maybe because of) its imperfect beginnings, however, Gothic literature came to be a venerable, albeit controversial genre with a mysterious appeal. Following in Walpole's wake were a number of famous authors ranging from Radcliffe and Jackson to the ever-popular Edgar Allen Poe, all of whom brought their own little twists to the dark romance. In fact, with so many points of view, an exact definition of gothic literature becomes difficult to nail down. So if there is no clear definition, one might ask (and justifiably) "What the heck is Gothic literature?"
What is America Gothic? The American Gothic movement started around the same time as the transcendentalist movement. Gothic writers unlike transcendentalist writers believed that life wasn 't all rainbows and butterflies. They saw it as a cruel and sometimes menacing place. During this time Gothic writers wrote about the true evils and that even the nicest person could have some of the worse demons.
Gothic fiction is a genre of literature consisting of horror, darkness, death, terror, castles and many other horrific elements to create suspense and to engage the reader. During the 18th century this specific genre became popular with the novel “The Castle of Otranto”, and later on developed into other known stories such as “Frankenstein” and “Dracula”. The name gothic is referring to the scary buildings which many of these stories takes place in. The gothic genre has also developed into German gothic and Victorian gothic. “The Tell-Tale Heart” is an example of a gothic short story, written by Edgar Allan Poe and published in 1943.
Fictional literature can be categorized into many different genres: drama, romance, science fiction, tragedy, comedy, horror, and gothic. Gothic fiction borrows from horror by sampling mystery, dire setting, and chilling architecture. Romance is sampled in gothic fiction by the use of characters, firm emotions, and misguided love. Greenblatt writes, " Gothic became a label for the macabre, mysterious, supernatural, and terrifying, especially the pleasurably terrifying, in literature generally; the link that Romantic-period writers had forged between the Gothic and antiquated spaces was eventually loosened" (584). Horace Walpole wrote The Castle of Otranto in 1764.
Edgar Allan Poe applies a variety of examples of this feel in the short story. An example of the feel of the genre is “the haunted mansion, haunted siblings, bewildering corridors, and eerie chambers,”(Fisher 88). The so-called feel of the Gothic genre is so well represented in “The Fall of the House of Usher,” that it makes a great argument that it positively is a representation of the Gothic genre and not for the Gothic parody. An obvious clue that Poe left behind was the death. In which, most Gothic genre ends with a death or some kind of terrible ending ,yet in “The Fall of the House of Usher,” the conclusion of the short story is a basic ending to the story because this type of genre is dark.
Romanticism as a whole emphasized the individual, the irrational, the imaginative, the spontaneous, the emotional, and the transcendental. Shelley herself defines "gothic" as a story "which would speak to the mysterious fears of our Nature, and would awaken thrilling horror--one to make the reader dread to look around, to curdle the blood and quicken the beatings of the heart." By infusing moral and social concerns into the gothic style, Shelley achieves more than a simple horror story, however. The universal societal and psychoanalytical questions raised in Frankenstein secure its place in world literature and promise decades of similarly fashioned gothic writings. As stated above, the gothic genre developed as a harsh reaction to the predominant Neoclassic ideals of the time; the emphasis shifted from the whole to the solitary, and from society to nature.
Just before he starts to tell his story, he tells Robert Walton that his story has "unparalleled misfortunes" and that he has "memories of evil" this is meant to strike fear into the reader and into Robert Walton, it shows that Victor Frankenstein is deeply horrified with what has happened to him. There is also evil in this story a... ... middle of paper ... ...ypical through out all of the book. I believe that Frankenstein is definitely a horror story and that it is also a Gothic story, because it has many features that are typical of these genres. I do not believe that they are the main genres though, as the Romantic genre is a lot more dominant in this novel. I believe that this is mainly because of the time period that it was set in, as it was written in 1818, and this was when people were starting to discard the horror genre, and they were starting to believe in nature.