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The Elements of Suspense

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The Elements of Suspense All Stories Contain Certain Elements Plot Character Setting Dialogue Narrative Suspense Anxiety or apprehension resulting from an uncertain ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: The Elements of Suspense


1
The Elements of Suspense
2
All Stories Contain Certain Elements
  • Plot
  • Character
  • Setting
  • Dialogue
  • Narrative

3
Suspense
  • Anxiety or apprehension resulting from an
    uncertain, undecided, or mysterious situation
  • Dictionary.com

4
  • In suspense there must be an unknown a
    suspicion, a mystery, a danger we expect

5
Suspense (mystery, intrigue, tension) is built
with
  • Facts
  • Innuendo
  • Atmosphere
  • Action

6
Ways to deepen suspense
  • Dreams
  • foreshadowing what may happen
  • showing the characters deepest fears, his
    haunting past

7
Ways to deepen suspense
  • Clues
  • journals / diaries / letters / notes / pictures,
    etc.
  • physical evidence that can be used to determine
    time of death, how, and where

8
Ways to deepen suspense
  • The Weather
  • the season can match or contrast the characters
    emotional state

9
Ways to deepen suspense
  • The Senses
  • the smell of blood, the stench of an alley
  • the taste of fear
  • reaction to finding a dead body
  • the feel of blood-soaked clothing

10
Ways to deepen suspense
  • The Villain
  • his/her motivations or intentions
  • simple greed, jealousy, money
  • the complicated serial killer mind

11
Ways to deepen suspense
  • Other characters
  • plant red herrings
  • shift suspicion onto them

12
Themes Concerning People
  • Terror inflicted upon the often unknowing and
    innocent victim
  • Innocent people caught up in events they cannot
    control
  • Transference of guilt innocent characters
    failings are transferred to another character and
    magnified
  • Explored the compatibility of men and women
    (especially a mother figure)
  • The wrong man

13
Themes Concerning the Mind
  • Guilt (real or the appearance of it)
  • Redemption
  • Early films reflected the political climate of
    Europe during the war
  • Preferred to use suspense rather than surprise

14
The Nightmarish Mind of Edgar Allen Poe
15
Background
  • Born 1809-1849
  • His mother died during his youth and his father
    abandoned them
  • After the death of his grandmother, he married
    his 13-year-old cousin, Virginia in 1835
  • Virginia died in 1847
  • Died in 1849

16
Education of Poe
  • Entered and dropped from both the University of
    Virginia and West Point
  • Ran into debt and started borrowing money,
    gambling and getting deeper into debt

17
Writing Style of Poe
  • Wrote in a Gothic Style
  • Deep and intense
  • Explorations of ? world of dream and of nightmare
  • In his stories the past is darker, more ominous
    and oppresses his heroes and heroines

18
Poes Characters
  • Many of his characters are filled with madness
  • Obsessed with the irrational side of the mind

19
Edgar Allen Poes
The Tell-Tale
H E A R T
20
General Information
  • Setting
  • The story opens with the narrator telling readers
    that he is not mad. His narrative is supposed to
    be a vehicle to show he is not insane.
  • The story is set in a house occupied by the
    narrator and an old man during the mid 1800s.

21
General Information
  • Genre
  • Horror story and
  • psychological thriller
  • Story and Style
  • The Tell Tale Heart is one of Poes shortest
    stories. Its lack of detail only adds to its
    suspense by creating a mood of paranoia for the
    reader that mirrors the feelings of the narrator

22
Literary Focus
  • Point of View
  • The story is told in first-person point of view
    by an unreliable narrator.
  • The narrator is obviously deranged, even though
    he declares at the outset that he is sane.
  • As in many of his other short stories, Poe does
    not name the narrator.

23
Literary Focus
  • Irony
  • The irony of the story stems from the narrators
    claims of sanity being disproved by his own
    claims.
  • Although he proclaims himself to be too calm to
    be a madman, he is defeated by a noise that may
    be interpreted as the beating of his own heart

24
Literary Focus
  • Imagery and Repetition
  • Poes use of sound throughout the narrative,
    combined by using repetition adds to the storys
    suspense.
  • The effect is a building of noise in the readers
    ears and a building of tension

25
Themes
  • Mankinds wicked sideanother self
  • Mankinds paranoia
  • Mankinds Fear
  • Mental Pressure and Fatigue
  • Appearance vs. Reality
  • Dark Appearances vs. Dark Thoughts

26
Character Analysis
  • The Narrator
  • Deranged unnamed person who tries to convince the
    reader that he is sane.
  • He is intelligent and has the ability to commit a
    crime with skill and precision
  • He nagged by what he calls heightened senses,
    something that is a condition found in several
    various Poe stories 

27
Character Analysis
  • Character Analysis
  • The Old Man
  • Neighbor
  • Three Policemen

Seemingly harmless elder who has a hideous "evil
eye" that unnerves the narrator.  Person who
hears a shriek coming from the house of the
narrator and the old man, then reports it to the
police.  Officers who search the narrator's
house after a neighbor reports hearing a shriek.
28
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