Annabel Lee : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread

I am in a class that is called "Everything is an Argument." We had to chose a poem and explain how facts could be pulled out and used into an argument. What points could be pulled out of the poem that could be argumentive? If you could please send me your thoughts as soon as possible i would appreciate it. thank you

-- Anonymous, January 18, 2000



I regret that I do not fully understand your request as it relates to the poem Annabel Lee. I presume that the fundamental objective, given the name of the class, is to identify some debatable issue with the poem as a whole or, at least, a contestable element embodied within the poem. Personally, I fear that you may have inadvertently chosen the very composition that boldly and utterly contradicts your class title. Be that as it may, consider this I hope it helps.

Annabel Lee was written in 1849, two years following the death of Poes beloved wife, Virginia and was published following his own mysterious demise on October 7, 1849 in Baltimore. At the time of his death, Poe had been engaged to be married to a childhood sweetheart, a widow, Mrs Sarah Elmira Royster Shelton on October 17, 1849. At the time, there was some debate as to whom this Annabel Lee was intended to represent. In fact, many women of the time eagerly confessed to being the source of Poes sorrowful lamentation in the poem. I subscribe to the view that it was his wife, Virginia because his complete devotion to her has been so well established. Regardless, this is an element for debate to this day and one you may wish to consider.

Finally, if I recall correctly, one of Poes most heartfelt principles of poetry was that it serve beauty unconditionally, in what ever form, above truth. That is to say that poetry need not necessarily be factual, nor did it need to provide any measurable service to a literal interpretation. Only that it meet the authors purpose of communicating truth as he saw it or imagined it to be. And if those objectives were to convey his capacity for love and devotion, literal truth invariably proved to be much too confining and limiting. Other poets of the time did not necessarily agree and perhaps this is another element to argue.

I trust this has come in time and is of sufficient relevance to be of some assistance to you. If not.. Please accept my sincere regrets. : )


-- Anonymous, January 23, 2000

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