De quincey s essay on the knocking at the gate in macbeth
Here I pause for one moment to exhort the reader never to pay any attention to his understanding when it stands in opposition to any other faculty of his mind. The mere understanding, however useful and indispensable, is the meanest faculty in the human mind and the most to be distrusted: and yet the great majority of people trust to nothing else; which may do for ordinary life, but not for philosophical purposes. I love this philosophical digression that warns us against paying too much attention to our understanding! Here is why:. The reason is — that he allows his understanding to overrule his eyes.
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Reputation of William Shakespeare
On the Knocking at the Gate in Macbeth
Literature Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for scholars and enthusiasts of literature. It only takes a minute to sign up. Connect and share knowledge within a single location that is structured and easy to search. In Thomas De Quincey's essay " On the Knocking at the Gate in Macbeth ", he describes the effect of the knocking at the gate Macbeth , Act II, Scene 3 on him when he was a boy: "it [the knocking] reflected back upon the murderer a peculiar awfulness What does he mean by this? Does he admit feeling sympathy for Macbeth? From my boyish days I had always felt a great perplexity on one point in Macbeth.
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From my boyish days I had always felt a great perplexity on one point in Macbeth. It was this: the knocking at the gate, which succeeds to the murder of Duncan, produced to my feelings an effect for which I never could account. The effect was, that it reflected back upon the murderer a peculiar awfulness and a depth of solemnity; yet, however obstinately I endeavoured with my understanding to comprehend this, for many years I never could see why it should produce such an effect. Here I pause for one moment, to exhort the reader never to pay any attention to his understanding, when it stands in opposition to any other faculty of his mind. The mere understanding, however useful and indispensable, is the meanest faculty in the human mind, and the most to be distrusted; and yet the great majority of people trust to nothing else, which may do for ordinary life, but not for philosophical purposes.
He climbs back up to retrieve it, but the truck begins moving, taking him further from London and into the country. This is one of the great hallmarks of Hitchcockian suspense: The moment when, against all your instincts, you find yourself developing some measure of sympathy with the Devil. With no real suspects, the case fascinated everyone in England, but none more so than Thomas De Quincey himself. His obsession in all these works is in probing the nocturnal world hidden from sight, holding our terrors up before us for closer inspection.
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