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Edgar Allan Poe Vs. D.H. Lawrence On The Topic Of "Love"

1113 words - 4 pages

PART I:In his short story entitled "Ligeia," Edgar Allan Poe created a love relationship that truly startled the audience. The lovers of the story, the narrator, whose name remains unknown, and Ligeia are involved in a rather strange and unfamiliar relationship.The love relationship between the two lovers is not the type that would commonly be seen. As a matter of fact, this connection may not even be qualified to be called "love." Rather, it is merely an obsession; an infatuation; and more appalling, a form of worship. The narrator tells the audience how he falls in love with this lady, Ligeia. The dimensions of her very being "made their way into [his] heart by paces so steadily and stealthily progressive that they have been unnoticed and unknown" (225). Yet these are the symptoms of falling in love. When the feelings enter the heart, going unnoticed, it is love that is being dealt with. In addition, Poe, the author of the story, makes it clear that what the narrator and Ligeia share is true love. To the readers though, it may be everything else but, for what is portrayed is a truly eccentric relationship.Throughout the text, the narrator goes on to describe how lovely and beautiful Ligeia is. It is her "placid cast of beauty" that the narrator speaks of. Compliments on the beauty of the beloved are great. However, when it becomes so intricate because of infatuation, it becomes a form of worship. In this light, the audience portrays the narrator as the worshipper, and Ligeia, as the goddess. The narrator even describes Ligeia's lips as "heavenly." In addition, he speaks of "every ray of holy light" falling upon her "serene and placid, yet most exultingly radiant of all smiles" (227). He says that what he is doing is making an "offering on the shrine of the most passionate devotion" (226). One can see this as an act to be done towards a god. Evidently, the narrator is doing more than complimenting Ligeia; he is idolizing her.It is now clear that he is in "love," though it may be that of another degree. In a Freudian view, it is not all quite startling, yet, to many, it still is. The love relationship between the narrator and Ligeia definitely is not an eros, or sensual, type of love. One can safely make this claim for there was no mention of physical contact between the two lovers. A contact between them was when Ligeia placed her hands on the lover's shoulders when he needed help in his studies. When this image is pictured in one's head, the mind will see a nurturing mother, rather than a lady in love. The love relationship that the narrator and Ligeia share is a maternal love towards her child. This is made clearer when the narrator says, "without Ligeia I was but as a child groping benighted" (231). It seems that he is desperate for Ligeia, as a child would be desperate for the mother's love.PART II:"Men live by food, but die if they eat too much. Men live by love, but die, or cause death, if they love too much." These are the words of D. H....

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