analysis of Angel of Odd : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread

I have to make a comparison between my own analysis and someone else's concerning the theme and symbolism of Poe's "the Angel of Odd". What source can I look under? Do you have any critiques about The Angel of Odd? If so, please let me know.

-- Anonymous, September 22, 2000



First printed in the Columbian Ladys and Gentlemans Magazine in October 1844, The Angel of the Odd  An Extravaganza was a satirical piece probably intended for humor with observations most likely meant to draw attention to the gullibility of the public at large. In April of that year, Poes tale, The Balloon Hoax was printed in the New York Sun with large headlines indicating that the Atlantic Ocean had been crossed by balloon in a mere three days. This account required a reprint and a large crowd gathered where copies sold for 50 cents apiece.

According to A. H. Quinns biography of Poe, The Angel of the Odd  An Extravaganza is a ridiculously fanciful tale along the lines of Mesmeric Revelation and may have been written in response to a request from the magazine to submit a lighter story than some of his more recent submissions. Poe had submitted The Premature Burial just three months before and it had been reprinted in The Rover in August. Kenneth Silverman, in his biography, indicates that it may have been an attempt by Poe to submit a comic tale in response to the tastes of public consumption at the time. Personally, I suspect this is true because Poe never lost site of the need to provide for Virginia and his Aunt Clemm.

Honestly, I dont know what to tell you in regards to specific symbolic representations. Frankly, I dont read that much into this story. My interpretation of this tale has always been that it was a comparatively simple, rather straight forward tale of fantasy or a tongue in cheek story merely to take a humorous jab at public susceptibility to hoaxes and their predisposition to fall for wild tales. I would be interested, however, in any interpretations you may like to share, Misty.

Best of luck on your assignment.


-- Anonymous, September 23, 2000

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