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Montresor's Point Of View Essay

1417 words - 6 pages

Weber 4Montresor's Point of View in "The Cask of Amontillado"byMelinda WeberTammy MataComposition IIFiction Analysis6 October 2014Word Count: 1209Melinda WeberMrs. MataEnglish 1302 Section 561136 October 2014Montresor's Point of View "The Cask of Amontillado"Weber 1Edgar Allan Poe's "The Cask of Amontillado" is the story of a vengeful man, Montresor, which repays the supposed insult of his enemy, Fortunato. Montresor persistent in his mission lures Fortunato into the crypts of his home with the promise of Amontillado sherry. Not knowing what is in store for him, Fortunato follows Montresor into the crypt where his inevitable demise awaits. The entombment of his chained living body into the crypts of Montresor's home unrevealed for the next fifty years. Poe skillfully uses Montresor's point of view to create a storyline that brings to life an unreliable narrator, who divulges his horrendous crime to an important implied listener, all while displaying his intimate thoughts and emotions; reviling himself as an insane murder.Poe's use of first person narration establishes a more personal connection between the reader and narrator, who is the main character, Montresor. Poe not only uses the first narrative approach, but he also makes Montresor an unreliable narrator. In "Method to the Madness," Patrick McGrath states "''The Cask of Amontillado'' is also a superb early example of the unreliable narrator at work. Having drawn us into Montresor's paranoia with his very first sentence, Poe will not let us escape."With the use of an unreliable narrator, Poe lures in the audience and forces them to work out the truth behind Montresor's story. The reader is left to think about the actual reliability of the story that Montresor is telling; that of a truth or that of a lie. The use of first person narrative gives Montresor the ability to talk in a familiar tone, as if he knows the implied listener. "You, who so well know the nature of my soul, will not suppose, however, that I gave utterance to a threat" (190). Montresor's relationship in knowing the implied listener, who is seen as his confessor, allows him to fully open up and present each and every little detail about his sin from the very beginning of the story. "During the 1970s, some scholars suggested that the silent auditor is a father confessor" (Davies).Poe uses first person versus a third person narrative because it allows the reader to get lost in their minds, venturing in the inner thinking of their thoughts to unmask the reason for Montresor's sudden need to tell his confessor of his murderous past. The reader is made aware that his confession comes fifty years after the murder. "Against the new masonry I re-erected the old rampart of bones. For the half of a century no mortal has disturbed them" (194). This gives the reader an idea of Montresor's true age at the time he tells his listener of his sins. "For if Montresor has murdered Fortunato fifty years before, he must now be some seventy to...

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