The Asylum John Harwood Analysis

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Fear and trauma are two significant emotions shown throughout gothic novels. In “The Asylum” by John Harwood, Georgina finds herself in Tregannon Asylum where she discovers the dark secrets of her family and the Asylum. Harwood uses terror to evoke the sublime by foreshadowing the coming of danger in the reader. Furthermore, Harwood uses terror to evoke the sublime by portraying fear of the powerful. In the novel “The Asylum” by John Harwood, the author captures the fear and trauma of his characters by evoking the sublime and creating a sense of terror for the reader.

To begin, the author uses terror to evoke the sublime by foreshadowing the coming of danger in the reader. First of all, the actions of a seemingly innocent person foreshadows
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Second of all, the feeling of fascination in a character leads to repulsion in the reader. After Georgina and Lucia meet and tell each other about their pasts, ““You cannot imagine,” she kept saying, “what a delight it is to find someone who has lived exactly the life I always yearned for, settled and tranquil, and bound by ties of deep affection.” Often as I talked I was aware of her gaze, drinking in every detail of my appearance; a little disconcerting at first, but very flattering.” (145). Since Georgina had a decent life, and Lucia’s was slightly less eccentric, Lucia was very fascinated by it. The fascination and awe Lucia shows towards Georgina foreshadows Lucia’s obsession with her. This obsession leads to Lucia going extreme measures in order to make sure she had what Georgina had. This event foreshadows Lucia’s betrayal which provokes the coming of danger in the reader. Finally, the author captures the terror Georgina feels when she is at the asylum. When Georgina was taking a walk to the old stable, she thought “There was no…show more content…
First of all, the power that close family holds creates fear inside of Rosina when she thinks her father is lying to her. When Thomas Wentworth, Rosina’s father, calls her to his office, he tells her “”Your sister is dead, as she deserved. There will be no mourning, and no further mention of her. You may go.” His look said, as clearly as if he spoken, “Disobey me, and the same may happen to you.”...the next thing I knew, I was back in my room, possessed by a dreadful suspicion that he had caused her death.” (Harwood 117). The power and control over Rosina and her actions is portrayed by her father. When her father unemotionally tells her that her sister is dead, she cannot help but think that he killed her, and fears that the same may happen to her. This event leads to the feeling of terror that the powerful are capable of anything. Second of all, power in family creates suspense when Georgina fears she is not being told the truth. After Georgina reads all the letters and asks Mr. Lovell, the solicitor, for the packet her mother left for her, Mr. Lovell says “I am afraid not. Your mother was, as I say, absolutely explicit. Unless your circumstances should change in a very particular way, I may not give you the packet, or reveal to you anything whatsoever about the bequest. If I had not made the unpardonable error of sending you those letters, you would never have known of its
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