Kaleidoscopic Visions: Images of the Self in The House of The Seven Gables
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H. L. GABLE, JR. Kaleidoscopic Visions: Images of the Self in The House of The Seven Gables In writing The House of the Seven Gables, Hawthorne chose to overlay his narrative with a lengthy and detailed description of the various spiritual, psychological, and even physical corruptions to which the Maule curse had rendered the Pyncheons liable. That choice allowed him to indulge his temperamental interest in the sources of sin, and to emphasize the ponderous weight and great complexity of the problem he was addressing, the power of Blackness. This gothic overlay of analysis is not, technically speaking, part of the plot; it does not advance the action. But it is presented in the form of a plot. Fitst and foremost, we encountet the problem of who, ot what, has enslaved the Pyncheons in what amounts to a murder mystety about the unaccountable death of seven generations of Pyncheon patriarchs. This "false plot" form serves two complementaty purposes: first, to suggest that something in the House needs to be inver


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