SOS is the description for the international Morse code distress signal. Even outside of its Radio telegraphic origins, it is now universally known as a distress signal. Although some people may think the origin of the letters stand for  “Save Our Ship,” it was actually chosen because it was an easy way to remember the number of “dits” and “dahs” in Morse code.  It is used quite often in popular culture (anything from Back to the Future to  S.O.S. brand scrubbing pads) especially when the user is calling for help of some sort

In House of Leaves, this distress code functions on multiple levels. It is part of the narrative, the Will, Karen, and Reston hear  knocking in this pattern coming from within the house. The paragraphs are structures (three long, three short, three long) to further echo the distress call. Not surprisingly, this is happening when the personal lives of the characters need saved.


~ by hlrypngr on March 14, 2010.

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