Hall Of House Of Usher Essay Research

Hall Of House Of Usher Essay, Research Paper

Fall of the House of Usher "During the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless

day in autumn of the year, when the clouds hung oppressively low in the

heavens?" is the opening sentence to the ever strange The Fall of the

House of Usher by Edgar Allan Poe (1373). This sentence pretty much simplifies

the mood of this gothic tale of death and the supernatural. This story

encompasses a unique setting which acts out the story by itself. Much emphasis

is placed on the looks and feeling that the house gives to the unnamed narrator.

Through the use of imagery this great poet sets the mood or foreshadows what is

expected to come. The ever presence of the "mansion of gloom" causes

the reader to imply that only evil and death shall arise from the house (Poe

1374). Imagery, when used correctly, can be a mighty weapon that gives any story

a certain feeling different from others. Imagery sets the stage to give the

reader an idea of what the setting is and how it effects the outcome of the

story. In the introduction of this tale the narrator approaches a house of a

long time friend, Roderick Usher, and has a "sense of insufferable gloom

pervading my spirit" (Poe 1374). To the narrator the windows appear to be

"vacant" and "eye-style" and the narrator goes on to observe

the "rank edges," and the "black and lurid tarn," in which

he sees the reflection of the house. He later says, "when I again uplifted

my eyes to house itself, from its image in the pool, there grew a strange

fancy?" (Poe 1376). Although the narrator tried to view everything he

sees in a rational manner, upon seeing the house and its surroundings, he has a

sense of superstition. He goes on to say that, "about the whole mansion and

domain there hung an atmosphere peculiar to themselves and their immediate

vicinity" (Poe 1377). This statement indicates that perhaps the house does

indeed have supernatural characteristics. The narrator also notices the fungi on

the walls and the poor structure of the house and suggest that something

possibly supernatural is holding the house intact, otherwise it would have

fallen to the ground long ago. The setting is shown to be the house itself and

all of these quotations concrete the fact that Poe used various gloomy

descriptions in order to get across the total evil that encompasses the house.

Death is apparent and is "in the air" because the house is ghostly and

everything involving the Mathusalehistic (Bible) house. Setting can not just be

quarantined by itself when analyzing a story because many details make up the

overall setting. Setting is not limited to concrete objects and places but a

feeling can also be the inner setting of the story. In The Fall of the House of

Usher several great aspects of the setting are death, supernatural, evil, and

everything else from the dark side of the spectrum. In the story there is an

increase of negativity on the atmosphere of sorrow, which turns to one of great

evil, which leads to death: death of Roderick Usher. It is in the atmosphere and

creates a living nightmare for Roderick. It is a nightmare that wants to escape

but cannot – that is he can not escape the nightmare alive. In this story death

is not considered as a bad occurrence, especially for Usher, who uses death as

his only means of escape: his only way to freedom. And in the end Lady Madeline

of Usher seeks revenge on Roderick but she does not know that he welcomes death.

Usher preferred death than the hellish prison his life was becoming. It is

death, in the fall of Usher; Usher finally has peace- he finally has freedom.

Poe uses death and evil as the main non-concrete setting of the story. The whole

entire story revolves around this feeling of death and becomes a major setting

of the story. The setting of any story greatly influences what the reader is

suppose to perceive from what will happen and what is actually happening. In the

story The Fall of the House of Usher Poe with the use of imagery gives the

reader a sense of the total evil of the house. The mood for the story can be

seen rather early on and is intended to get the reader in the right frame of

mind for what is about to happen. Poe also used a thought or feeling as a

setting. He incorporated evil and death into the story and these became its main

theme: "I shall perish, I must perish in this deplorable folly?.- I feel

that I must abandon life and reason together I my struggles with some fatal

demon of fears" (Poe 1378-1379).


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