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Father Of Gothicism Essay

1325 words - 6 pages

“I grew, day by day, more moody, more irritable, more regardless of the feelings of others. I suffered myself to use intemperate language to my wife. At length, I even offered her personal violence.” This line comes from the story The Black Cat written by Edgar Allan Poe. Poe has been proclaimed the “Father of Gothicism” by many due to his grotesque short stories and poems. Gothic writers had their characters be more “prone to sin and self-destruction” than any other movement had experienced (Poets 2). This mysterious style of writing lasted until the 19th century, and other popular gothic writers and characters include Bram Stokers Dracula, and Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein. Poe along with ...view middle of the document...

However, Edgar Poe had developed a close bond with his foster mother named Frances. In 1824 Edgar Allan Poe wrote his first poem at age 15. He then was enlisted into the army in 1827 under the name Edgar A. Perry starting out as a soldier then ranking as sergeant major. In April 1829 Poe entered the US Military at West Point, which he quickly realized wasn’t for him. While he was in the academy he published his second book of poetry called Al Araaf then decided to get himself kicked out by not attending any classes. Poe was omitted from West Point and continued on publishing several anonymous short stories and poem books becoming a more established writer.
At age twenty-six Poe was hired as editor of the Southern Literary Messenger where he published the disturbing story, “Berenice”. The story was about a man whom had become engaged with his cousin and was the first story to include a dead or dying woman as the theme. Around this time period he had also fallen in love with his 13 year old first cousin named Virginia Clemm. He wrote a letter to his aunt begging permission to marry her daughter, which she granted and on May 16, 1839 Virginia and Edgar Poe were wed in Richmond, Virginia. Those who knew the couple noted that they seemed to have a “brother-sister” relationship but they always appeared affectionate and loving towards each other. In 1840 Poe published Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque, a collection of short stories showcasing Edgar Poe’s gothic style of writing. This publication made Poe the master of short story form, which he stated was the best way to write a story. “How many good books suffer neglect through the inefficiency of their beginnings!” (po) Poe believed so strongly in short story form because of how the work had to be solid all the way throughout the story. Poe then published his first and only novel. By 1845 Poe had landed a job at the New York Evening Mirror where he published his most famous poem, “The Raven”. Poe’s new job was more difficult than all the others he had obtained in the past, because of all the criticism he received. Adults called him “one dimensional” since he only dealt with the unreal and remote (Edgar 2).
My critical work written about Poe’s short story “Ligeia” written by Henderson Kincheloe. Ligeia is the main characters beautiful and mysterious wife but she quickly became ill and passed away leaving her husband a wreck. The husband turned to opiate drugs and eventually remarried, but despised his new wife because she would never be Ligeia. His new wife, Rowena, also becomes ill and passes away, but after she died the husband sees Ligeia appear in her old body. This is a great example of how the Father of Gothicism introduced the topic of dying or dead women to the literature world. Kincheloe’s review gave quality information about the story...

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