Classic elements of american gothic literature
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Classic Elements of American Gothic Literature. Setting. Large old houses, usually family estates (America didn’t have the castles that England did) Something scary (unexplainable events, deaths, legends) happened at the house in the past, or happens throughout the story. Plot.

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Setting
Setting

Large old houses, usually family estates (America didn’t have the castles that England did)

Something scary (unexplainable events, deaths, legends) happened at the house in the past, or happens throughout the story


Plot

Seeks to discover secrets in a supernatural, mysterious environment – atmosphere of suspense

Supernatural events – ghosts, doors that open by themselves, etc.

Women who are frightened or confused, wandering around and/or suffering and dying from some inexplicable illness


Stylistic choices
Stylistic Choices

Foreshadowing, omens, dreams, visions usually contribute to the mysterious atmosphere of the story

Words used like “dark,” “foreboding,” “mysterious,” “ghostly”


Psychology
Psychology

Intense emotions - terror, insanity, a sense of impending doom, obsessive love


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