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The Main Theme In Edgar Allen Poe's Five Short Stories

1806 words - 8 pages

Edgar Allan Poe wrote five short stories that are very popular. “The Black Cat,” “The Cask of Amontillado,” “The Fall of the House of Usher,” “The Raven,” and “The Tell-Tale Heart” are the stories that I found similar. Poe’s stories were written between 1839 and 1846. All of them are similar in a way that they involve madmen. These men think they are sane, but they end up doing horrible things. Poe’s writing style is very dark. We can consider what he is writing to be gothic.
“The Black Cat” is one of Poe’s more gruesome stories. It is one of the darkest stories he has written. The narrator opens the story by saying he is sane. It is the night before he dies. The story talks about the narrator’s past and how he knew so many people who all loved him. He also talks about his love for animals. He marries his wife young and gets her into loving and owning pets. “We had birds, a gold-fish, a fine dog, rabbits, a small monkey, and a cat,” (Poe). His wife was superstitious about the black cat, Pluto, but never really worried too much about it. The narrator began getting irritable and moody. He became an alcoholic and began abusing his wife and animals. As his alcoholism got worse, he did not treat Pluto that well. After returning home drunk one night, he physically hurt Pluto. The cat bit him on the hand, so he took out a penknife and cut out one of Pluto’s eye sockets. He goes to bed and the next morning feels a little remorse. Pluto began to recover slowly, but as the narrator began drinking more, he decided to hang Pluto from a tree one morning. That night, his house ended up burning down, but he believed that those two situations were not connected. The neighbors see an imprint of the cat with a rope around its neck on the wall and the narrator tries to explain. One night when he was out drinking, he runs in to a similar cat that looks like Pluto. He takes the cat home and him and his wife adore it. One night, he trips over the cat and tries to hit it with an axe. His wife defends the cat and he kills her instead. The man makes a tomb in the basement and hides the body and the weapon inside the walls. The cat was nowhere to be found. Four days later, the police show up to the man’s house. He gives the men a tour of the house, including the basement. He tapped on one of the walls and they heard a loud scream. When they found the body, the missing cat was sitting on her head.
The biggest symbol in this story is the alcohol. Edgar Allan Poe was a alcoholic for much of his life. As I continued reading the stories, I found important similarities between them.
“The Cask of Amontillado” is a gothic story. Montressor, the narrator, starts off the story by saying a man named, Fortunado, offends him. Montressor decides he wants to seek revenge in a way that will not get him caught. Montressor offers Fortunado but says that if Fortunado doesn’t want it, he’ll give it to someone else. They go in to a vault to taste the wine and Fortunado begins to cough. He...

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