“An obsession is a way for damaged people to damage themselves more.” - Mark Rarrowcliffe. Obsessed people seemingly will do anything for their obsession, resulting in hasty and reckless decisions. In general, impulsive decisions lead towards people making risky choices. Often impetuous decisions don’t take into consideration the long term consequences of actions.
There are times in life where people do commit a small mistake, or a huge crime, but what really matters is if one will listen to their conscience. In “The Tell-Tale Heart” by Edgar Allan Poe, the main character lives with an old man who has an eye that “resembled that of a vulture--a pale blue eye, with a film over it.” The story revolves around the main character’s obsession over the eye, and how he got rid of it-- by murdering the old man. Towards the end of the story, the young man confesses to the police about his insane stunt after they searched his house. In “The Tell-Tale Heart,” Edgar Allan Poe focused on having the reader know more than the secondary character, using description, and using a first-person narrator, to build suspense.
For example in “The Tell-Tale Heart”, the author explains the appearance of the man’s eye: “One of his eyes resembled that of a vulture” (pg. 74). The old man’s eye symbolizes the man’s obsession over judgement. The man thinks the old man is watching and judging him. He’s so afraid of judgement that he creates an uncontrollable obsession over the eye. His crazy obsession makes him kill the old man just so he doesn’t have to see the eye anymore.
While this may be the case, many people may think he was fully aware of what he was doing. This can be proven wrong because the narrator states, “I loved the old man. He had never wronged me... I think it was his eye yes, it was this!”(2).This quote reveals that it was not the old man at all that had made him want to murder him, it was his eye that was his motivation.
Modern artists today generally use images of physical and mental illness in literature. In The Tell-Tale Heart and The Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allan Poe, both short stories show the usage of illness, madness, and fear. The narrators in both stories try to convince the readers that the characters are physically and mentally ill. Edgar Allen Poe creates these vivid characters which successfully assist the building of plot and ideas. Poe demonstrates how a person’s inner turmoil and terror can lead to insanity through illustrative language.
“The Tell-Tale Heart” by Edgar Allen Poe is an enthralling and terrifying tale of an insane and paranoid Narrator suffocating his own roommate in his sleep. Throughout the story, fear and dread is a common theme. At every twist and turn Poe creates a sense of uneasiness. Using this, Edgar Allen creates fear and dread through the Characters, Conflict, and Suspense, making the “The Tell-Tale Heart” a scary, and captivating story. Edgar Allen Poe creates fear and dread in “The Tell-Tale Heart” through his characters, more specifically the Narrator.
The Tell-Tale Heart is a story about an insane narrator claiming to his sanity after murdering an old man out of anxiety and panic. Many believe the evidence points to the narrator being a calculated killer. After reviewing the symptoms of the narrator I believe him to be a man plagued with anxiety issues and panic attacks. First of all, the only reason the narrator had for such crime was of his eye, the eye of a vulture, nothing else. Not for his gold, property, or vengeance just his eye.
“It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.” ( Voltaire) This quote helps explain the main idea of The Tell Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe , a story about a narrator who is the caregiver of the old man who explains his reasons and his exact ways for killing the old man he was taking care of. Out of spite for the victims vulture-like cataract eye, he plots this plan to kill for weeks to rid of the eye. He finally succeeds until a nosy neighbor foils the scheme. These are 3 reasons why the narrator is guilty of murder.
Obsession, internal conflict, and underlying guilt are all aspects of being human but when it’s associated with paranoia and insanity it may be just the recipe for the perfect crime as perceived by Edger Allan Poe in “The Tell-Tale Heart”. Poe uses this as one of his shortest stories to discuss and provide an insight into the mind of the mentally ill, paranoia and the stages of mental detrition. The story 's action is depicted through the eyes of the unnamed delusional narrator. The other main character in the story is an old man whom the narrator apparently works for and resides in his house. The story opens off with the narrator trying to assure his sanity then proceeding to tell the tale of his crime, this shows a man deranged and hunted with a guilty conscience of his murderous act.
Humanity’s Delusion Edgar Allan Poe effectively utilizes different elements in the short story “The Tell-Tale Heart” to convey his message. Poe believes that literary pieces should be short enough to finish in one sitting yet still be able to tell just as much to give more impact to the readers (Cummings, 2010). As does his other writings, “The Tell-Tale Heart” portrays several characteristics people have, revealing much about certain extremities in human nature and society in general. In the first few paragraphs Poe already presents us important details to the story.
“Insanity: n. mental illness of such a severe nature that a person cannot distinguish fantasy from reality, cannot conduct her/his affairs due to psychosis, or is subject to uncontrollable impulsive behavior” (Hill). This definition describes the narrator, a sweet yet deadly man, of “The Tell-Tale Heart” by Edgar Allen Poe seamlessly. (Appositive) A few prominent characteristics demonstrate the narrator’s insanity, and those include his motives, his actions, and his thoughts.
The Style of Poe Analysis In “The Tell-tale Heart” by Edgar Allen Poe, the demented, arrogant and dark tones reflect the man’s guilt and insanity that eventually leds him to admit to the crime he committed. Poe’s diction heightens the arrogant tones which is seen as the man plans the murder and carries it out in a careful, organized way. He goes “boldly” into the chamber, “cunningly” sticks his head in the doorway and feels “the extent of his own power”. Poe’s use of diction shows how cocky the man actually is.
Every day and night that the eye would haunt him, he would receive a better understanding to how he will overcome the eye. An obsession begins as a thought about someone or something, which is what happens to the narrator, the thought of the eye is the beginning of his obsession for it. The author satisfies his obsession “every night, about midnight” by “turning the latch” of the old man’s door and peeking his head through (3.4-7). By doing so, he got to take a look at the old man’s pale blue eye. To the narrator this eye stimulates an unhealthy obsession.
Obsession is caused by numerous things. Once obsession has it’s grip on someone, it’s likely to never let go, consuming that person’s every thought, every action, and, possibly, entire life. Captain Ahab, the main character from the movie, Moby Dick, is a clear victim of obsession. He seeks the harshest revenge on a great, white whale called Moby Dick. Ahab’s obsession is caused by pride which is illustrated by Starbuck’s thoughts of murdering Ahab, the many difficulties of the crew, and countless deaths.