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A Literary Analysis of Edgar Allen Poes The Fall of the House of Usher And The Masque of Red Death In the short story The Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allen Poe setting and symbolism are used to effectively convey ideas effects and images in order to establish mood foreshadowing and characterization Poe uses the setting to create a macabre atmosphere in the readers mind For example Ushers house its windows bricks and dungeon are all used to make a dismal atmosphere The white trunks of decayed trees the black and lurid tarn and the vacant eyelike windows contribute to the collective atmosphere of dispair and anguish This is done with words such as black lurid decayed and vacant The narrator states that the Usher mansion had an atmosphere which had no affinity with the air of heaven Poes meticulous choice of words creates a very effective atmosphere in the story Another way Poe uses setting is to foreshadow events in the story Roderick Ushers mansion is one example of this There is a barely perceptible fissure in the masonry It is the small crack in The House of Usher which the narrator defines as both the family and the family mansion This foreshadows an event that will ruin the house and the family The fissure divides the house Roderick and Madeline die destroying the family The narrator says there is a wild inconsistency between the masonrys still perfect adaptations and the crumbling condition of the individual stones This is also symbolic The stones represent the Usher family and the entire mansion is a symbol for the whole family From a distance no one knows that the House of Usher is in despair The fabric gave little token of instability-- or rather the mansion itself showed no outwardly visible signs of the turmoil it concealed In addition the story takes place in autumn a season associated w ith
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