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Lovecraft and horrors

A short article about horror stories written by H.P. Lovecraft and their use in learning English
I was actually reading some new articles about learning English when a sudden thought struck me – dammit! Why do all these learners take English-learning as boring and unpleasant activity? Yeah, not all of them, but still the decent majority keeps endless drilling and spreads rumors that learning English has to be like this.
Then I conceived the article about horrors – I don't mean all these pesky modern movie horrors which leave me disappointed over and over. No. The horrors stories that I'm going to write about are something better and much more scary.

Howard Phillips Lovecraft was born in 1890, in Providence, Rhode Island. He lived rather strange life. Raised solely by his mother, two aunts and grandfather, had little contact with friends. He also used to be ill quite often. His father became psychotic at the age of 3 of Lovecraft's. In his youth he was encouraged to read, especially classics, such as Illiad and Odyssey, but also The Arabian Nights. The interests in weird and unnatural were stirred in him by his grandfather who told him his own tales of gothic horror. The life he lived wasn't easy and that perhaps influenced his work.
His most important works are on Cthulhu mythos and The Great Ancient Ones. Lovecraft developed his own mythology made up from various cultures from all over the world, writing stories and poems about these beings.

One can ask, what are The Great Ancient Ones? Well, it's quite hard to answer to someone who has never read any of Lovecraft's stories, because describing it in lame's terms would simply ruin the effect which the author created in his works. I can speak about the malignant beings beyond space and time, about horrifying tentacles, madness, cults of death and blasphemous magick rituals...

All of the Lovecraft's works are about darker sides of this universe and man. I mean, the sides we don't usually recognize or even not want to peek there. Nevertheless, in the psychological point of view they are parallel to “underground” layers of psyche, the muddy instincts lurking in the subconsciousness... Why they are scary? Quite simply: Because they connect to the real life.
The fine example of a being in the works could be Azathoth, the blind Idiot-God. Here's the quotation from some of original texts':

'Outside the ordered universe [is] that amorphous blight of nethermost confusion which blasphemes and bubbles at the center of all infinity—the boundless daemon sultan Azathoth, whose name no lips dare speak aloud, and who gnaws hungrily in inconceivable, unlighted chambers beyond time and space amidst the muffled, maddening beating of vile drums and the thin monotonous whine of accursed flutes'.

Anyone interested? For those who actually are, I have some good news: The Lovecraft's novels are now spread over the Internet and all you have to do, is just to type 'Lovecraft' in your Google.

Getting back to the point of the beginning, what is the point of reading Lovecraft's novels? Hell, to improve your English skills! The worst you can do is just sit and drill grammatic. This is completely no fun and not so effective as having contact with the real language. English in novels of the author is rich enough for you to learn new vocabulary and to provide some fun. Especially for those who like weird tales.


Dodano: 2008-12-21
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