Paranoia In The Tell Tale Heart

Decent Essays
Parallel Paranoia

Paranoia is having an extreme, irrational distrust of others. These people struggle to form healthy, close relationships because they truly believe that others are always out to get them. In “The Tell-Tale Heart,” written by Edgar Allan Poe, Poe kills an old, innocent man. The man lives with a vulture eye, obsessed over by Poe, until he is brutally murdered. Poe goes off the wall. David O. Russell directs a similar story, The Silver Linings Playbook. Pat is suffering from bipolar disorder and has just been discharged from a mental asylum after spending a year there for almost beating a man to death. He continues to struggle building relationships with others. Both Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart” and Russell’s modern movie,
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Poe is a killer, suffering from paranoia. He wrote “The Tell-Tale Heart” in first person. This work of literature is unreliable due to the fact that Poe suffers from paranoia. He is crazy: “The disease had sharpened my senses—not destroyed—not dulled them” (Poe). Being paranoid, it makes Poe more likely to imagine what isn’t there. In this situation, the vulture eye tormented him. It did not affect anybody else, because they did not see some silly eye as a threat to them, like Poe. In The Silver Linings Playbook, Pat deals with bipolar disorder which is a mood disorder characterized by periods of depression alternating with mania or hypomania. Much of the time, he spends at the mental asylum because of his incident. Paranoia engulfs Pat so much, that he can’t get on with his normal life. Once an idea gets put into his brain, he cannot get the thought out of his head. He will blurt out inappropriate phrases, which tends to hurt those around him: “Can we get through one f***ing conversation without you reminding me that my god***n husband is dead?” (Russell). Pat continuously reminds his acquaintance, Tiffany, that her late husband is dead. He makes her feel alone, but he doesn’t try to do that. It is because of his personality, having paranoia, that he does this. It hurts the relationships he is trying to build. The characters show that a person living with paranoia cannot function in normal society along with

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