Ghosts Literary Elements

Ghosts Literary Elements


A play



Setting and Context

The story starts in Rosenvold in the 1880s. It is Alving's mansion, which is situated on the west coast of Norway.

Narrator and Point of View

There are a lot of dialogues and conversations between people. But sometimes a third person describes the atmosphere of this play.

Tone and Mood

The tone of this play is rather depressing, because readers get to know all the truth about the miserable family, which hides its troubles. The mood is not cheerful. It is more sardonic and dramatic.

Protagonist and Antagonist

The protagonists of the play are main characters – Mrs. Helen Alving and Oswald Alving. The antagonists are their wrong actions, which destroy their destiny.

Major Conflict

The major conflict lies in the struggle between main characters and their existence. The conjugal betrayal causes this conflict and changes everything.


The climax is observed when Mrs. Alving gets to know about the affair between her son Oswald and Regina. She is against these love relationships.


Oswald’s illness foreshadows his further life. And it is clearly that he doesn’t have future. Only pain and sufferings will haunt him.




As Manders is a pastor, he always carries the Bible with him. And it alludes to the Bible as a collection of sacred texts in Judaism and Christianity.


The author turns to imagery when describing nature, which reflects the inner world of the characters and helps to better understand the environment and conditions they are living under.


Oswald falls in love with Regina, but she is a daughter of the late Mr. Alving, which makes her his sister. Paradox is love relations between a brother and a sister.


We can notice the parallelism when Helen Alving hates her husband for the unfaithfulness, but she loves and helps him to have a good reputation.



Use of Dramatic Devices

Helen Alving always thinks about her life. It is full of acute disappointments. But she doesn’t break down. She “struggles twice as hard, fighting as though for life or death”. She assumes power in her hands and wins people’s hearts. This monologue gives readers the example of a strong spirit.

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