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Characteristics of Gothic Horror

  • Date Submitted: 02/14/2011 09:27 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 59.6 
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Characteristics of a Gothic Horror

      Whenever someone thinks of something that is gothic, the common thing they think of something that is very dark and often reflecting death. Gothic Arquitecture was a movement of a style of houses that was often included very large room and was commonly a very dark area. Through these very vague ideas of what something that is Gothic is, someone could read ”The Fall of the House of Usher” written by Poe, and see it as Gothic literature. After viewing the details as to what characterizes a Gothic literature, “The Fall of the House of Usher” is a striking example of a Gothic horror.
      The first characteristic of a Gothic horror that we see in just the first couple pages, is the sense that the “House of Usher” could be seen as a castle or castle like. When describing his first venture into the house, he described the entrance as a “Gothic archway” (740) into a hall. In a castle there are secret passages, trap doors, secret rooms, and hidden staircases all throughout it. Roderick says that the hallways that go throughout the house are “dark and intricate passages” (740), sending the reader that it is very difficult to maneuver through the house and filled with surprises.
      A key characteristic to a gothic horror is woman who is constantly in distress. She was often suffering even more because they would often be abandoned and left alone.   In Poe’s story Madeline has a terrible disease leaving her to suffer throughout the story. Her disease is also very contagious and is left alone throughout the story.   Roderick wasn’t to “be seen by me no more” (742); “I learned that the glimpse I had obtained of her person would thus probably be the last I should obtain” (742).   Madeline had become “a gradual wasting away of the person” (742). This reflects a woman that would be in distress.
      There are themes and vocabulary that are distinctive to a gothic horror. Most of the vocabulary helps to give a mysterious and eerie...


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