Chapter 1: Christmas Eve

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  • Chapter One- Christmas Eve
    • MONK'S PIECE
      • A country house on Christmas Eve, sometime in the 1930s.
      • A play on words? Arthur is not completely at peace in himself.
      • Similar to Eel Marsh in it's remoteness and situation.
        • Why? To face his fears? Because he cannot escape his past?
      • In front is good lad, Arthur's present and future, behind is the heath, his past.
    • MOVING FROM DARKNESS TO LIGHT
      • Christmas is a time when good triumphs over evil.
      • The safe, warm atmosphere of Monk' piece gives the reader a sense of security.
      • Arthur has found people he can be happy with, but he has not escaped.
    • IRONY
      • Hill is self-referential, mocking the techniques of the ghost story whilst also paying tribute to them.
    • ATMOSPHERE
      • Creation of a false sense of security for the reader.
      • There is something depressing and troubling in Arthur's background-mentally buried but not extinct.
      • The transitory nature of human nature and the folly of complacency.
    • INNOCENCE AND EXPERIENCE
      • Arthur loses his in Crythin Gifford.
      • The young children sleep peacefully
      • Arthur knows what true ghost stories are, his family does not.
    • THE ROMANTIC
      • Romantic movement: 1785-1830, interested in INNOCENCE corrupted by EXPERIENCE
      • Key Theme of 'Frankenstein' and William Blake's "The songs of innocence and Experience."
    • CONTRAST
      • Arthur's attitude toward ghosts (experienced) with the innocence of his step-sons.

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