Treatment of Literary Devices in Gothic Fiction

Author: Tanya Sanderst

Amongst popular and highly accepted form of literature, Gothic fiction too succeeded in emerging as an admired form of literature. Its unique concept and elaborated representation are positively accepted and well received by the readers. Gothic fiction is actually a marriage of supernaturalism with romanticism to create a thrilling sensation among the readers with complete involvement of their senses. Gothic fiction actually deals with the arousal of all senses to meet gloomy, terrifying or supernaturalism in the most heightened way to create mystery in the story to keep readers interest intact throughout. The foundation of strong and upholding gothic tales can only be materialise through intelligent fabrication of various literary devices that leave its reader awe-struck.

Literary devices serve the purpose of creating gothic in the most suitable manner and without implication or strong co-ordination between various literary devices only a deteriorating story can be established. Background landscape, date, time, setting and plot are the crucial elements in proposing a gothic literature. An old royal castle or dungeon surrounded by dried landscape, hustling sound of water, moonless night for extra darkness, owls, silence and gloomy nature or sounds are all elements that sets a horrifying background for the readers. A deteriorated labyrinths, passages or architecture which once was thriving with life and noise due to some curse or misdeed has turned into pale and silent collapsed building bounded with a mysterious past and deeply rooted emotions are few literary elements that keeps the track of gothic writing.

Along with the aged and collapsed buildings, forests or gloomy night settings, set of characters are of great importance to link up the story with the emotions and architectural buildings. A hero who possess the courageous and bold characteristics to counter attack the devil and escape people from his dangers, a wandering spirit or ghost or supernatural power who needs to be punished for his transgression, a lady who is followed cynically by the wandering sprit, a mysterious servant who knows all the secrets of link between past and present and most importantly a comic character to relax the senses of its readers but do not intend to divert their minds. These are all elements of literature without which a gothic master piece is impossible to create. Apart from the surroundings and atmosphere, story telling technique and the dialogues between characters adds enigmatic effect to the story with and effortlessly acts as a supportive agent in progressing story forward.

Gothic fiction are vastly based on revengeful storyline conducted by the outsider element due to false conception of being cheated that provokes him or her to get involve in evil deeds. The conflict and tension usually resolve as the outcome of hero’s heroism by imparting the knowledge of successfully winning of good deed over sinful attitude. Towards the end of the tale it is elucidated that social life is stronger than demeanour. Weather, time, elements of nature, sun, moon, stars and many other elements contributes to the rise of terrifying masterpiece to stir the humans for its horrifying romantic drama.

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About the Author

Tanya Sanderst is the author of this article.

Literary Devices are a collection of universal artistic structures that are frequently employed by the writers to give meanings and a logical framework to their works through language.


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