Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Literature, House, Books, Love, Fear, Family, Writing, Relationships

Pages: 6

Words: 1650

Published: 2021/03/26

Every writer or author takes some aspects into consideration when writing their pieces. They intend to explore some subjects and themes in their works that resonates with the readers or the audience of their writing. The writing style, themes, and even characters give a certain book its unique, exceptional and distinct feature that draws the readers in that particular book. Every book anticipates to be received by different audiences in a different manner. But the most important part is for the readers to capture the essence of the themes and style that form the basis of a particular writing. In her book The Haunting of Hill House, Jackson employs different styles and themes in this particular piece. The setting of the book is based on the fifties, and it is infused with the supernatural phenomenon that is characterized by horror and the paranormal theme. She talks of a philosopher or rather who is a psychic researcher who sets on an escapade in search of a haunted house. When he finds the Hill House, he decides that it is the perfect and ultimate place to carry out his research. On the other hand, Moore explores the life of a girl who is in her middle age recollects about her adolescent period in her book Who Will Run the Frog Hospital. She uses first person narration whereby the protagonist of the novel is the narrator.
There exist many contrasts between these two books given that Jackson chooses to explore the horror and the gothic subject. While Moore uses memory as a narrative tool in provoking the reader to journey back with the narrator to her girlhood times. Dr. Montague is so passionate about the supernatural gothic issues that make him want to conduct enough research that he hopes will help him proof about his area of study and finally publish it. Gothic writers often write to convince the readers that whatever they are reading might as well be considered true and not fiction. When authors like Jackson write about supernatural subjects, they want it to resonate with the audience that whatever they are reading about is practical and concrete phenomenon. Jackson uses a language that elicits and evokes emotions with a perplexing atmosphere that is full of tragedy and drama. Her work is full of emotional austerity and horror that infiltrates and is encompassed in the whole narrative. Jackson’s style of writing - the converse of the elaborate trappings of the Victorians of the exceedingly comprehensive dreariness and boredom on many modern authors is not quite sparse and scant. Each word that she uses is carefully chosen to relay the story in a precise way while she keeps the description at a minimal; she presents the narrative in a vivid and intense manner.
Her opening sentences make every effort to convey the historical setting that is always essential for a haunted house and permeates the house with a disturbing and creepy character. While Moore’s book focuses more on the memories that the character draws from her early years, it is also reminiscent of lost opportunities that make the novel a real story. Many people can relate to the accounts that are narrated because most of the people have undergone such circumstances. She incorporates the themes of loss, regret and despair as she brings out these subjects through the narrator. The emotional life of adults is also brought to the fore when the narrator exclaims that she doesn’t love or feel loved by her husband anymore when she says ‘I feel his lack of love for me’ (Moore p5). She comes to this conclusion when they are in Paris where they are on vacation. The theme of memory if further embedded in the constant presence of her teenage best friend Sils that she spent most of her time in her hometown of Horsehearts in upstate New York. It is the narrator’s memories that are incorporated in the script that invigorate and enliven the narrative making this novel a captivating and intriguing coming-of-age story. Moore’s comical and amusing brilliance as well as skillful handling of the changes between the cultures of different times that are represented by the narrator between adulthood and adolescence also makes her writing an extraordinary, heart-rending and remarkable piece of work. The presentation of Mrs. Montague as a person who lacks social skills also seems to be a source of comic relief in this book a fact that makes them similar based on this theme.
Both writers bring out their prowess in fiction writing. While Jackson employs actual gothic and ghostwriting skills chillingly, Moore uses efficient construction by reflecting on memories that abound the narrator. The omniscient narrator can be seen to be Eleanor whose mentality or conviction is unsteady and unstable which makes her point of view particularly unpredictable and erratic. The use of the Hill House as a central symbol, she has its supernatural presence affect all the characters and those who are more sensitive seem to be on the receiving end. After undergoing harrowing and terrifying events, Eleanor begins to gain some sense of identity with the house and suddenly starts to feel comfortable and warm but grows progressively more suicidal. Although there is also an obscure likelihood that Eleanor possesses an intuitive psychic ability that is the basis of the many disturbances that are encountered by the other characters may show that there is no existence of a ghost in the house at all. Such a prospect is suggested in the initial stages of the novel because of Eleanor’s childhood memories of a ghost. It is also another similarity in the use of memories and flashbacks as an important theme in these narratives.
The irony is also a prevalent subject or theme in both the novels. The narrator in the novel Who Will Run the Frog Hospital, Berie stole money from an amusement park where she was working in order to help her friend Sils procure an abortion that she did in Vermont. But later on, her marriage with Daniel is childless, and the fact that they are in Paris to attend a conference on fertility adds another twist to the whole story. As the notion of being childless troubles her as she finally confesses that her love with her husband has died out, she also thinks about her foster sister who later committed suicide. The most notable similarity in these two novels is the use of women to bring out the femininity subject. Both authors portray women very predominantly. Jackson uses a lot of women characters in her novel such as the main character Eleanor who is rather a troubled, repressed and more so tragic of them all. We also see Theodora, a substantial and profuse soul who may be portrayed as a lesbian. Other women characters include Mrs. Dudley, Mrs. Montague, and Mrs. Sanderson, who is Eleanor’s mother. All these characters represent the activities and events that are going on at Hill House. They bring out the traditional of femininity as some of them strive to break free of this conception.
The idea of fear is also embedded in these novels. Fear manifests itself in Jackson’s book because the main stage is a haunted house that is characterized by all sorts or paranormal and strange happenings. Every character in this book expresses some fear at one point or another. Dr. Montague fears that if he doesn’t succeed in publishing findings of a haunted place or the paranormal subject he was studying, his efforts might have gone to a waste. Other characters also express fear of love, fear of commitment or fear of loneliness. The fact that this house is haunted and is full of strange happenings instigates fear in the characters more. While in Moore’s book, fear is manifested when Berie fears that she is trapped in a loveless, energy-wasting dying marriage but doesn’t know how to confess this to her husband. She knows that her marriage is doomed but is compounded of fear of revealing it which leads her to flash back her memories to her teenage hood that was more carefree and full of fun. An additional similarity in these two books is the lack of understanding things that are even predictable. In Moore’s book, the protagonist Berie finds it hard to understand how her parents can be able to welcome so many strangers into their home, including exchange students, refugees, and foster children but can barely try to understand the inner lives of their very children.
In Jackson’s book, lack of understanding is also prevalent when the various characters don’t understand why Eleanor is so much disturbed about ‘nonexistent’ things that keep on frightening her. The strange events also perplex the residents of the house not knowing that she has had a past with ghosts, and maybe she is fearing that the old memories are back to haunt her again. The writers present skillfully constructed sentences that capture the readers’ attention and seek to make the readers were of what happens after every event. Both characters in the book show a sense of determination. When Eleanor was driving to the Hill House, she pictures herself living in the beautiful houses that she passed by. Dr. Montague also was very determined about finding evidence that the Hill House was truly haunted, and this is why he wanted to publish his findings in the academic sphere. He was also so passionate about finding such a house, and Jackson shows this by the phrase ‘‘he had been looking for an honestly haunted house all his life. When he heard of Hill House he had at first been doubtful, then hopeful, then indefatigable; he was not the man to let go of Hill House once he had found it’’ (Jackson pp. 5). Berie was hopeful that she would lead a fun-filled life just like her teenage years, and she wants to quit the marriage trap that she is in.
The theme of romance is also a common subject in these two great novels. In Moore’s book, the narrator, Berie, talks about the way they used to hang out with men they used to work at the amusement park. She talks about her best friend Sils dating a boy named Mike as she also talks about her tumultuous relationship with her husband. In Jackson’s novel romance is brought about by Eleanor, Theodore and Luke. Both Theodore and Luke seemed to be attracted to Luke, and both were striving to draw him to each of them. The romance took an unexpected turn when Eleanor started feeling attracted to Theodore. She even goes ahead and tells her that she will move in with her. These instances show the emotional aspect that is depicted in these two novels. Both books are characterized by the tragedy at some point, with the death of Eleanor, that some view as suicide and Berie’s adopted sister’s suicide. All these themes give the novels a distinct nature that the authors intend to convey to their readers. These authors employ the theme of death often in mysterious and tragic way to evoke emotions and sentiments that are often associated with death. Eleanor being rudely and forcefully evicted from the Hill House where she thought she had found solace and considered it her home drove her to leave the mansion hurriedly and finally crashed into a tree and died. Many of the characters believe that she had committed suicide, and this may be explained by the constant disturbances that had compounded her. The house had begun to possess her and, therefore, Dr. Montague ordered her to leave for her safety. Moore uses the theme of death too by presenting the death of LaRoue. Just as Eleanor is thought to have committed suicide, so does LaRoue. The tragic ending of these characters also shows the similarity of the emotional sentiments that the authors awaken in their readers.

Work cited

Jackson, Shirley. The Haunting of Hill House. New York: Penguin Books, 1959. Print.
Moore, Lorrie. Who Will Run the Frog Hospital? London: Faber and Faber, 1994. Print.

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WePapers. (2021, March, 26) Comparative Literary Analysis Essay. Retrieved April 24, 2024, from https://www.wepapers.com/samples/comparative-literary-analysis-essay/
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Comparative Literary Analysis Essay. Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/comparative-literary-analysis-essay/. Published Mar 26, 2021. Accessed April 24, 2024.

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