The Pit and the Pendulum essay

600 Words3 Pages
The Dungeon of Madness In this story, Edgar Allan Poe (such as in many of his works) uses the setting to create a dark image inside our minds. He makes this specially through darkness, therefore the character makes a connection with death. “The physical setting oppresses him in the visions of his graveyard” (1). “The setting plays an important role in how the narrator discovers the many ways he may die” (2). It is a dungeon full of torturing traps, and the character, as any normal human, feels terror inside his prison and fears his death in any of the cruel ways arranged for him. Still, he has to decide between death and the relief which it brings or life with the interminable agony of being tortured as a lab mouse. The best terror…show more content…
This dark, decayed, disgusting and risky place makes the character confused and makes him feel inside hell. He feels despair and does not understand the cruelness of his captors (even though he had heard some stories, being there was worse). The psychological setting of confusion, discrimination and madness makes the character turn crazy with his different and contrasting thoughts; like stillness against tumultuous sounds, insensibility against full memory or fear against peace. We do not know exactly, but the psychological setting may represent the experience of racism or discrimination and its consequences. A person can live an internal hell of depression, loneliness, hopelessness and desperation. The temporal setting “oppress the character with the shape of a pendulum” (3) He fears its deadly velocity which represents his final hours of life. He feels terror of the doom that will “cut” his time on earth. As everyone knows, this symbolizes that death is inevitable. Finally, the historical setting of “The Pit and the Pendulum," tells us about events that occurred in the Spanish city of Toledo, “the central command from which the religious persecutions of all Jews, Muslims, and accused "heretics" were put on trial” (4). The Inquisition punished, imprisoned, tortured and executed the supposedly heretics in many unbelievable and terrifying ways. It was not abolished until the capture of Toledo by Napoleon Bonaparte and
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