Dark Symbolism In The Tell-Tale Heart By Edgar Allan Poe

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“The Tell-Tale Heart” is a short story written by the novelist Edgar Allan Poe. That depicts a confession of a mentally unstable murder who is overcome with his own paranoid rationalizations. Poe had lived a life of destruction, darkness and tragedy. Poe, born in 1809, lost his mother at the age of three. He was raised by his foster parents in Richmond, Virginia (Kirszner and Mandell 325). Poe started to gamble in order to levy money for food and clothing because he suffered from a lack of financial support (Kirszner and Mandell 324). He died in 1849; however, the cause of his death is unknown. “To this day, the cause of Poe’s death remains a mystery” (Kirszner and Mandell 325). Poe has influenced many writers all over the world with his amazing …show more content…
The eye is extremely symbolic because it explains an omen of evil that reflects upon the narrator. Vultures are birds that are usually associated with death and darkness. In this case, the narrator fears that someone will see into his deepest darkest fear. The old man’s eye represents an open doorway into the mind and soul of the narrator. The narrator does not enjoy being watched, so he decides to get rid of the eye to eliminate the feeling of being trapped by the old man. “Whenever it fell upon me, my blood ran cold and so by degrees—very gradually—I made up my mind to take the life of the old man, and thus rid myself of the eye forever” (Poe 619). He is afraid of the old ma’s eye that lies inside of him because he fears the person he has become. The way the narrator has the delicateness and caution to get rid of the vulture-like eye and then confess to the crime, clearly shows his obsessions towards the old man. “Object there was none. Passion there was none. I loved the old man” (Poe 619). This symbolizes that the narrator has a physiological terror towards the old man’s “Evil Eye” and is not mentality stable. (Poe …show more content…
During the introduction, the narrator points out that he is not a madman. “True!—nervous—very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am, but why will you say that I am mad? Hearken! And observe how healthy—how calmly I can tell you the whole story” (Poe 619). Nevertheless, the reader soon realizes that the narrator is indeed a madman and an unreliable narrator. A normal healthy person does not feel that they have to justify that they are not insane unless they believe that they have practiced something that might make them look insane. In this example the narrator feels he must justify his metal soundness in order to explain to the reader why he does not consider himself a madman. However, at the end the reader can conclude that the narrator is far from having a healthy and stable

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