The Fall Of The House Of Usher, By Edgar Allan Poe Essay

1168 Words Dec 23rd, 2015 5 Pages
In the chilling narrative, The Fall of the House of Usher, Edgar Allan Poe describes the gradual emergence of insanity within both the narrator and his companion, Roderick. However, beneath the surface of the relationship that is exhibited between the duo lies a more complex parallel: Roderick and Madeline. Roderick and Madeline are not only described as twins, but also are strongly alluded to be symbolically connected together to the house. Poe symbolically portrays the deterioration of the mind by describing the relationship between the conscious versus unconscious, Roderick versus Madeline within the House of Usher.
Not only is it symbolically evident that Roderick and Madeline represent the conscious and the unconscious, but physically apparent. Madeline is described to resemble a living corpse, having a condition that renders her in a state of “settled apathy, a gradual wasting away of the person” (Poe). Evidently, Madeline does not fear death, she embraces it. Roderick, especially when he is faced with Madeline’s supposed death, cannot come to terms with her death, and evidently, his own upcoming death. The narrator describes Roderick to be a man of the arts, who enjoys literature, music, and paintings. In an attempt to evade thoughts of his inevitable demise, Roderick distracts himself with art, desiring to live in a world with no death, even if it were only through the pages of a book. Poe paints a stark contrast between Roderick, a man who “leaves the real world…

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