Theme Of Gothic Elements In The Pit And The Pendulum

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Gothic Elements in Edgar Allen Poe’s The Pit and the Pendulum

Keywords: death, mystery, temporal and mental impasses, The Pit and the Pendulum.
Poe uses the elements of sounds, emotions, darkness, and light very skillfully. Poe's using the available natural and physical elements rather than supernatural factors is the strong point of the story. Narrating with infinite fear and through artistic imagery, the first person narrator completely absorbs the reader in the story. Such atmospheres appear in most of Poe's stories; however, “in Poe's works, there are [in general] many unhealthy mental situations and states associated with detective imagery and gothic scenes” (Priestley 181-180). Poe's stories originate from dreams and are artistically …show more content…

Not at the beginning of the story, but after describing his own mental, physical, and spiritual conditions, the narrator reveals the place where he is locked in and, thus, creates suspense and excitement. He is a prisoner in an absolutely dark and horrible experiencing hypnagogia and wishing for death while fearing it; a frightening darkness rules over his surroundings, just like a mind that has no perceptions of what is going on. He is sentenced to death, but he is to be executed only after being physically and mentally tortured. Throughout the story, the narrator speaks of death; naturally, the thought of death is a source of fear and horror so we can consider death as another Gothic element. In fact, the first sentence of the story points to sickness and death: [………….] Elsewhere, after leaving the illusionary world, the narrator is inspired that his negative thinking of getting close to death has been true; he even yearns for death; […………….]. In fact, he is sentenced to death by the Inquisition Court from one hand, and on the other hand, he desperately hopes to die. Mystery (Harris) is another Gothic element found in The Pit and the Pendulum. This mystery is enhanced through the suspension of the main fictional character (the prisoner) between the world of fantasy and that of reality, and by the fact that he finds himself between death and life. This mystical suspension keeps the reader, to the end of the story, unaware of the causes of the narrator's imprisonment and his fate. Another example of the mystery in this story is that the narrator, as the only character, is

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