The Unreliability Of The Narrator In Ms. Found In A Bottle By Edgard Allan Poe

934 words - 4 pages

Edgar Allan Poe, one of the most important writers of 19th Century literature, used to see himself as primarily a poet. However, his reputation as a writer is in great part due to his tales and short stories. These involved from the gothic, the grotesque and the dark side of life, to the detective stories and to those which originated modern science fiction. Poe's unique style has been the subject of criticism and of studies for a long time, and the variety of narrators presented in each tale has also been analyzed by different points of view. In this research paper I intend to make a brief analysis of one of the tales that have been read and discussed during the classes and the focus of ...view middle of the document...

This is clear when he refers to his interest on the German moralists, Pyrrhonism and on physical philosophy, which are all related to skepticism and to materialism. "(...) the incredible tale I have to tell should be considered rather the raving of a crude imagination, than the positive experience of a mind to which the reveries of fancy have been a dead letter and a nullity."But in spite of this affirmation, after reading the text a couple of times and discussing it in class, I have come to the conclusion that the narrator is not completely reliable and that the facts did not occur as he describes them, if they did happen, after all. This means that the whole manuscript is involved in a paradox. First, since the beginning of the story, the narrator affirms that he has a kind of mental condition: "I went as a passenger - having no other inducement than a kind of nervous restlessness which haunted me as a fiend." Second, the behavior of the crew in his ship, who did not give any importance to his fear of a storm: "I told the captain my fears, but he paid no attention to what I said." After all, nobody seems to pay much attention to him, nor the crew of the first ship, neither the one of the second one. "They paid me no matter of attention, although I stood in the very midst of them al, seemed utterly unconscious of my presence."...

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