Symbolism In The Tell-Tale Heart By Edgar Allen Poe

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Edgar Allen Poe was born in Boston on January 19th, 1809. In 1811 Poe experienced the first many tragedies he would face throughout his life, the death of his parents. After this, Poe was sent to live with his foster parents John and Frances Allen. With different ideas on what Poe should do with his life, in addition to John’s lack of financial funding towards Poe’s education, Poe began gambling to pay his expenses. This eventually led Poe to leave the Allen mansion and begin his quest to become a great poet. Apart from difficulties amongst his family, Poe suffered a lot at love’s hand. With the departure of his first fiancé Elmira Royster and the death of his wife Virginia in 1847 to tuberculosis, the disease that had already claimed Poe’s …show more content…
With the examples of “The Tell Tale Heart” and “The Black Cat” there are strong uses of symbolism. In “The Tell Tale Heart” there is the symbol of the evil eye, known in many cultural aspects represents misfortune and the curse of malevolent glare. This idea plays in with the description and the others representation of the old man’s evil eye. Also, eyes are said to be windows to the soul and what the narrator sees when he looks in the old man’s eye represents himself, this idea can be based on the words the narrator uses to describe the eye. Like comparing it to a “vulture” an accurate portrayal of how the narrator handles the body (Krappe 85). Another symbol used in this short story are the lantern, which is commonly seen as a beacon in relation to the narrator’s goal in killing the old …show more content…
In “The Black Cat” and “The Tell Tale Heart” both main characters are clearly insane, further proven by the hideous murders they commit. “But why will you say that I am mad? The disease had sharpened my senses, not destroyed them, and not dulled them.” (Poe 1) In this quote we see how illness and insanity are viewed together, which could stems from Poe’s personal experience of the death of his wife to sickness leading to the insanity of grief. In “The Tell Tale Heart”, readers see the theme of addiction through the main character who has a problem with alcohol. This problem is a contributing factor to the narrator’s angry disposition. “But my disease grew upon me-for what disease is like alcohol!”(Poe 2) which seems to personally relates to Poe’s problems with

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