Gothic Romanticism In The Devil And Tom Walker

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As history progresses different cultures and trends take hold, which in turn creates patterns humanity has generalized to group and analyze media. These patterns are organized into styles. These styles can appear in different forms once they are created, as time reshapes aspects that humanity has attributed to that certain technique. One example of a style, gothic romanticism, has been modified and reused into the modern era. This specific approach to art usually consists of mysterious, dark elements: supernatural conflict and ominous setting, typically an abandoned castle. In the aged version of gothic romanticism, the gloomy aspects are still found; however, they are depicted in different manners. An example of modified gothic romanticism is seen in Washington Irving’s “The Devil and Tom Walker” by its supernatural conflict, and setting in the mysterious, abandoned Native American Fort. Irving’s…show more content…
This place, while not same as a castle, is described very similarly in the text. The fort holds a certain melancholy atmosphere, emphasised in certain details such as how the “gloomy pines and hemlocks [...] made it dark at noonday” and how the trees were “half-drowned, half-rotting” (322). This painted a dark picture similar to the typical abandoned castle. Another congruence between the two is the existence of lore surrounding the area. In gothic literature, the main setting commonly has mythology rooted in the area to add to the eeriness. Irving’s Indian fort has such a underlying lore, seen in the legend of Kidd the pirate. As explained in the start of the piece, “according to old stories” the fort had “a great amount of treasure buried by Kidd the pirate” (320). This and the gloomy description make it akin to the castle archetype in gothic literature, which presents another aspect of gothic literature that is warped by
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