Dark Romanticism

1392 Words Nov 30th, 2012 6 Pages
4. Define “Dark Romanticism” as you understand it by discussing two works by different authors. Account for the rise of this kind of writing in America and evaluate its appeal and significance then and now.
The Dark Side of Romanticism Romantic literary texts focus on the expression of emotion. Authors during the Romantic period developed and integrated the idea of the individual being the main focus in life. Romantic authors focused on the individual being at the center of their own happiness and destiny and evil dwelling outside mankind. Dark Romantics believed that evil is not only found in nature and in other people but evil also dwells inside every human being. Dark Romantics argued that earlier writers had ignored the darker side of
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In “The Tell-Tale Heart,” Edgar Allen Poe depicts a gruesome tale. His use of dark imagery and harsh words make this story an unmistakable product of the Dark Romantic period. Poe’s use of the first person narrator adds an important dimension to the story. The narrator’s thoughts are eating him alive and Poe clearly portrays this to readers by repeating words and having the narrator constantly question himself: I paced the floor to and fro with heavy strides, as if excited to fury by the observations of the men --but the noise steadily increased. Oh God! what could I do? I foamed --I raved --I swore! I swung the chair upon which I had been sitting, and grated it upon the boards, but the noise arose over all and continually increased. It grew louder --louder --louder! And still the men chatted pleasantly, and smiled. Was it possible they heard not? Almighty God! --no, no! They heard! --they suspected! --they knew! --they were making a mockery of my horror!-this I thought, and this I think. But anything was better than this agony!
This makes the narrator untrustworthy and unreliable. This also helps to illustrate Dark Romanticism’s questioning of mankind. Poe focuses on how unstable the narrator is and how the unconscious mind can destroy a man. The narrator drove himself absolutely crazy over the old man’s mysterious eyeball. He was obsessed with the eye and this caused the narrator to have extreme paranoia. The reader never finds out
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