How are tension and suspense created in The Signalman and The Red

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How are tension and suspense created in The Signalman and The Red Room? My aim is to analyse the way which tension suspense is built up in two Victorian stories – ‘The Red Room’ (by H.G Wells) and ‘The Signalman’ (by Charles Dickens). These two successful authors were both well known for using suspense and tension in their stories. Wells has written many classical books, which include “The Time Machine” and “War of the Worlds”. Dickens has written other illustrious books, such as “Christmas Carol”, “Great Expectations”, and “Oliver Twist”. Also in my analysis I will be briefly mentioning “The Clubfooted Grocer” (by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), “The Monkey’s Paw” (by W. Jacobs) and “The Tell Tale Heart” by (Edgar Allan Poe). All…show more content…
The title itself, ‘The Red Room’, indicates the overall nature of the story. The colour red is a very strong colour and is generally associated with danger or warning. This colour is also largely used in ‘The Signalman’; “Standing by the red light near the tunnel”. This is trying to give an indication of danger and alertness. It also makes you wonder why the ghost is there and why is it by the red light. It may be to warn the signalman of danger lying ahead. Both these short stories start off at bizarre scenes. The perilous railway and the spooky castle set a sense of mystery straight away at the start. They also begin with direct speech, which attracts the reader’s attention straight from the beginning. When the speech engages the reader, they want to read on and find out more. ‘The Red Room’ begins with; “I can assure you, that it would take a very tangible ghost to frighten me.” This engages the reader into the situation and the topic and briefly tells them the main theme of the whole story straight away. The author does not directly refer to the characters by their name, which creates a sense of the unknown. “The man with the withered arm”. Telling the name of the characters would be to revealing, and HG Wells intends to keep the characters mysterious. In “The Signalman”, an unnamed narrator shouts the words; “Halloa! Below there!” Again, the use of direct speech engages the
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