Gothic Literature and Romantic Literature Essay

Gothic Literature and Romantic Literature Essay

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Novels, written in various styles, maintain their value because each one presents the reader with a new thought to consider. Sometimes however, rather than expanding on an entirely new style to “suggest a thought” authors borrow characteristics from other novels to express themselves. These borrowed traits are then molded into a new shape. Authors from the Romanticism era did just that. They borrowed traits from Gothic literature to express their thoughts. Although the novels are unique and valued for their distinctiveness, the borrowed traits remain a parallel between the two genres. Traits such as deterioration of characters, love combating sin, return to animalistic priorities, and alienation of human emotion are all depicted in characters in Romantic literature. These traits are the cornerstones of Gothic literature. Characters from the Romanticism era have been profoundly impacted by Gothic Literature, as is evident in the parallels that exist between Great Expectations and Wuthering Heights compared to Frankenstein and The Picture of Dorian Gray.
In Picture of Dorian Gray, Gray deteriorates mentally. Dorian Gray is a man who is content with his appearance and stability in life. He is fascinated by his collection of foreign items. This collection of foreign items paints a picture of Gray’s fall into ruin. Gray starts his collection with exotic items that are ornate and interesting to look at. They are beautiful on the outside and were harmless in history. However, as his depression escalates and his sins deepen, his collection becomes a “mix of tyrants and Renaissance revenge figures that poison their victims…” (Platizky). His collection has become a reflection of himself; it is full of violence and sin and is rife with th...


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...: 202+. Literature Resource Center. Web. 2 Mar. 2011.
Shapiro, Arnold. "Wuthering Heights as a Victorian Novel." Studies in the Novel 1.3 (Fall 1969): 284-295. Rpt. in Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism. Ed. Jay Parini and Janet Mullane. Vol. 16. Detroit: Gale Research, 1987. Literature Resource Center. Web. 2 Mar. 2011.
Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein. 4th ed. New York, NY: Bantam Dell, Random House Inc, 2003. Print.
Snodgrass, Mary E. "Gothic Literature." Encyclopedia of Gothic Literature. New York, NY: Cataloging in Publication Data, Snodgrass, 2005. Print.
Wilde, Oscar. The Picture of Dorian Gray and Other Writings. 2nd ed. New York, NY: Bantam Dell, Random House Inc, 2005. Print.
Yousef, Nancy. "The monster in a dark room: Frankenstein, feminism, and philosophy." Modern Language Quarterly 63.2 (2002): 197+. Literature Resource Center. Web. 2 Mar. 2011.

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