Horror Flashcards Preview

English Lit A Level: Frankenstein And THT > Horror > Flashcards

Flashcards in Horror Deck (6)
Loading flashcards...

What do I want to say in the introduction for the question on how both authors evoke horror in their texts?

  • through Gilead regime, use of terror state + indoctrination
  • lack of wider perspective= incomplete narrative= do not witness horror
  • Frankenstein= witness horrific events as they occur
  • Chinese box narrative= Monster as ‘Heart of Darkness’= source of horror
  • both authors evoke horror as a warning

what can I say in relation to the narrative structure concerning horror?

  • THT= the lack of wider perspective given to the handmaid means there is an incomplete of inadequate narrator, meaning that often we do not witness the horrific event as they take place
  • Frankenstein= witness horror as it occurs, reinforcing the atmosphere of horror throughout the novel - primarily though Frankenstein’s narrative
  • use of pre-formative narrative structure perhaps implies that the character of the monster is the source of the horror throughout the novel, as it can be said (in a way that is evocative of Joseph Conrad’s ‘Heart of Darkness’) the horror that he ensues (through his horrific birth and subsequent murders) radiates onto the narratives of both Frankenstein and thus Walton, in whose narratives his story is contained.

The motif of insanity as a way through which the authors evoke horror:


Frankenstein: ‘ I was possessed by a kind of nightmare. I felt the fiend’s grasp in my neck… groans and cries rung in my ear’
- ‘image of Clerval, ghastly and murdered’
CONTEXT= Gothic genre, madness as well as supernatural beings- time of spiritual uncertainty and exploration of human extremes

THT: ‘I feel drugged. I consider this. Maybe they’re drugging me. Maybe the life I think I’m leading is a paranoid delusion’
CONTEXT: paranoia because of constant surveillance is facet of dystopian fiction (1984?) = effects of autocratic regime?


The parity of horror with sexuality:


‘consummate his crimes by my death’
ekphrastic narrative moment= evokes Henri Fuseli’s The Nightmare ‘ pale distorted features covered by her hair… relaxed form flung by murderer onto its bridal bier’
CONTEXT: The Nightmare, as well as parity of the two evokes the Gothic genre, spiritual uncertainty because of more general feelings of uncertainty= French Revolution and Romanticism seismic changing of attitudes, perverse sexuality?

THT: the ‘aunts’ show a video as indoctrination technique ‘women sucking penises or guns…chained with dog collars… raped… stomach slit open’
CONTEXT: professed by the ‘aunts’ as 1980s reality, particularly for the contemporary reader, encouraged to examine whether this is in fact the case= increasing controversy surrounding the prevalence of pornography and its depiction of women- questions its position in society? feminism?


Use of horror as a warning of the dangers of the pursuit of human perfection?

  • Frankenstein: pursuit of perfection of man through SCIENTIFIC ADVANCEMENTS: ‘breathed hard in a convulsive motion agitated its limbs… beautiful. Great God! His yellow skin scarcely covered the works of veins and arteries beneath… waxy complexion…. pale watery sockets’
    CONTEXT: increasing scientific concern with the discovery of the fundamental means of human life and the pursuit of immortality> GALVANI, Science plays a role that is at once promising and deeply unsettling- need for caution?

THT: ‘Hanged on hooks… blood seeped through


What are the three topic sentences for this topic?

  1. ) horror and sexuality
  2. ) the motif of insanity
  3. ) horror as a warning of the attempt for human perfection