Poe and gothic literature

Essay by EmilyGrace July 2006

download word file, 4 pages 5.0

Downloaded 64 times

The gothic literature style is a style which emphases the grotesque, mysterious and desolate. Common components of gothic novels included doom, death, old buildings with ghosts in them, decay, terror, mystery, the supernatural, madness, hereditary and curses. Gothic literature was born in 1764 when Horace Walpole published The Castle of Otranto, which is considered to be the first gothic novel ever written. Although, it was Ann Radcliffe that created the classic gothic tale with a villain. Since the Renaissance Period, the term gothic has been used to mean barbaric and ugly. Writers used the legacy of the Barbarian invasions of Rome as a basic for the scornful times and called them gothic. It is the predecessor to modern horror fiction and it above all has led to the common definition of gothic as being connected to the dark and horrific. Gothic literature was originally written as a reaction to the age of reason, order, and the politics of eighteenth-century England.

Gothic literature explored the tension between what we fear and what we desire. The gothic style died down by 1840; although, it still has a great impact on the Victorian literary period. Edgar Allan Poe led an inclination of romantic literature toward the mysterious and supernatural and the terror inspired in mankind. The Raven, one of his best known poems, displays vocabulary of the peculiarly obscure and stained nature.

His poetry is devoted to aspects of death and bereavement, the vanity of human

wishes, indefinable illnesses of the soul and futile quest for the rainbow of happiness. His stories provoke thoughts that may include horror stories, terror, fear, death, darkness, murder, obsession, insanity, sadness, loss, guilt, torture and the unknown.

Edgar Allen Poe was born on January 19, 1809 in Boston, Massachusetts. His Parents were itinerant actors; His father...