How did his life reflect the "Tell-Tale Heart" : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread

I'm doing a research paper on how "The Tell-Tale Heart" related to his life. I really need this information so if you can help I would appreciate it.

-- Anonymous, April 30, 2001



Generally, while I have always felt that some events, experiences and circumstances of Poe's life certainly "flavored" his work, very little of it could be considered a mirror image or directly reflective of those circumstances. Many of his ideas came from magazine and news articles of the time and he certainly made the most of those he used.

The tale "The Tell Tale Heart" has several interpretations but generally, it appears to be a study into the mind of a madman bent on ridding himself of an object of repugnance or perceived evil through stealth and cleverness. The story was first printed in January 1843 in the Pioneer. Interestingly, in April of 1840, an article appeared in Alexander's Weekly Messenger on the "Trial of James Wood" who was aquitted in the murder of his daughter for reason of insanity. The article has been attributed to Poe.

Therefore, it is not inconcievable that the seed for this tale may be found in the events and circumstances surrounding this trial of James Wood for murder (of which Poe was certainly familiar). This may very well be too simple an explanation and certainly diminishes the more romantic notion of Poe's eccentricities but for the most part, I find it more palatable than many of the psychoanalytical best guesses generally offered.


-- Anonymous, April 30, 2001

Yes and there was a mystery about a dead girl named Mary Rogers that Poe bragged about solving then remade into a story "The Mystery of Marie Roget." Not to mention also that Poe's relationship with his stepfather was somewhat maddening as well. The Imp of the Perverse and the Black Cat further explores the same themes with some indication of this dark side plaguing Poe as well.(self-defeating, nervous tendencies.)

-- Anonymous, May 01, 2001

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