Prof. Westengard | O628 | Fall 2022

Savara Khan


Coraline is a dark fantasy horror children's novella by British author Neil Gaiman, published in 2002 by Bloomsbury and HarperCollins. Coraline is a young girl who moved into a new house and finds a hidden door that leads to a world that is similar to but in many ways better than her own. When she finally makes the discovery, she is thrilled, but her Other Mother and the rest of her parallel family try to keep her there permanently. After many hardships,  Coraline then figures out a way to get back to her world. The gothic characteristics in the movie/novel are dark, horror, and suspenseful. The System of Doctor Tarr and Professor Fether is a dark comedy short story by Edgar Allan Poe. First published in Graham's Magazine in November 1845. It is about a young man and his companion who are traveling to France. They decide to stop at a well-known "Mad House" as they pass by it. After his friend introduced him to Monsieur Maillard, the superintendent of the madhouse, his friend leaves. After dinner, the guests appear to be rather insane as they take turns describing and then demonstrating the patients' delusions. Maillard assures him, though, that the insanity is locked up and the visitors are the guardians. The new system, according to Maillard, was created by Doctors Tarr and Fether. He explains the risks associated with the prior system in operation. A loud noise was heard at the bordered windows all of a sudden. The guest believes it to be the escaped lunatics. But it turns out that the ones who were actually held captive by the lunatics were the keepers. The gothic characteristics in this text are horror, suspense, and ghost. Both Coraline and “The System of Dr. Tarr and Prof. Fether had similar gothic characteristics but had different story outlines. Both created suspense for the audience and had them on their toes.

Coraline reminds me a little of The Castle of Otranto written by Horace Walpole because of the way Coraline's parents treated her and how Manfred treated his daughter Matilda. Both didn't show any type of attention to their kids. Often they were too involved in their work to give any attention to Coraline or even Matilda. Coraline's main lesson can be careful what you wish for. At the beginning of the novel and she is constantly seen as unhappy with what she has around her. But by the book's end, she does, however, come to understand the beauty of her ordinary existence and starts to love what she has.

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1 Comment

  1. adelisaredzematovic

    I agree with your point how in The Castle of Otranto the characters were similar. I felt that they were bad people, and very neglectful, and how it impacted the characters life.

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