Dustin Paluch Lovecraft Formal

Dustin Paluch Lovecraft Formal - Paluch 1 Dustin Paluch...

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Dustin Paluch Professor Schwartz FSP 101-13 13 October 2009 Perception- A Figment of the Mind (G) Halloween – A time for ghosts to unleash an inner evil. Ghosts are often considered to be an off branch of Phenomenology which is defined as the philosophical study of the confrontation between the self/the familiar and the Other/the unfamiliar. Throughout the 19 th century, and even today in the 21 st century, phenomenology still strikes fear in to most people. People in general do not like to be in the dark about anything, if there is an answer, most people want to know what that answer is, and the Other/unfamiliar half of Phenomenology does not offer those answers. An example of wanting to know answers in Lovecraft’s work is shown through the townsmen in The Dunwich Horror , the townsmen always want to know more about the Wheatley family, but the answers they get are never enough. In Ralph Waldow Emerson’s essay, “Experience” (1844), Emerson said “All things swim and glitter. Our life is not so much threatened as our perception.” What Emerson is saying is that people do not have to fear the unknown, but that they should seek to find out the truth of the unknown because without answers people’s perception is obscured. An example of obscured perception is whiteness demonstrated in Allan Lloyd-Smith’s American gothic Fiction. Smith describes whiteness as “a horror beyond the horror of conventional Gothic.” In Lovecraft’s story, The Outsider , the character in the story who other “normal” people see as a “monster” could also be considered a victim because he was horrified of himself. Once he leaves the underground world and emerges aboveground, he no longer belongs to any world; his world rejects him while at the same time the above ground Paluch 1
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world does not accept him ( Lovecraft 30-32). This conflict of whiteness vs. color plays a key role in the main conflict of Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick . But not yet have we solved the incantation of this whiteness, and learned why it appeals with such power to the soul; and more strange and far more portentous […] it is at once the most meaning symbol of spiritual things, nay, the very veil of the Christian’s Deity; and yet should be as it is, the intensifying agent in thing the most appalling to mankind (Melville 211). The whiteness described by Melville is “the unknown.” All of the shipmates do not know where Moby-Dick came from, how Moby-Dick came about, or why Moby-Dick is albino. Hatred toward Moby-Dick is demonstrated by Captain Abel and his crew as they continuously hunt the white whale, not just because he is a whale but mostly because he is white. Moby-Dick is the only white whale that anyone has seen, and many people are not ok with a white whale ruling the ocean. Every sailor in the story associates whiteness with evil because they cannot explain anything about the color white. Whiteness also plays a key role in Lovecraft’s The Dunwich Horror . In the story, the entire Wheatley family is albino and for that one reason, the rest of the
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This note was uploaded on 04/26/2011 for the course EVERYTHING 101 taught by Professor Variety during the Spring '11 term at Saint Louis.

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Dustin Paluch Lovecraft Formal - Paluch 1 Dustin Paluch...

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