was poe crazy?

greenspun.com : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread

I've read some of his books and they seem strange. Did he go crazy because of all the people that died?

-- Anonymous, October 04, 2001


Crazy is kind of a broad term and no, he was not that far gone. He had one bad episode of the DT's he details with fair detachment, considering the nightmare. His personal losses, isolation, poverty and admittedly self-made enemies did not help his sensitive, sometimes defensive and insecure personality. With prognosis from afar you can easily understand some of where he is coming from and some of his personality added to being orphaned and later disowned by his adoptive father. Read more of his essays. Judging a writer by his horror genre or fantasy is no way to judge the person without knowing the person's life at least as well we can in documents and from a distance. When Virginia died it was a bad period and his erratic courtships of other women were strange. Yet he did not go mad and tried hard to recover his personal and literary footing until the last tragedy intervened. He had real, decent friends and normal relationships who would find insanity claims libelous. There are real hair-raising stories of people going mad from that period. The dramatic actions of a sensitive poet in moody torment do not match up against these.

-- Anonymous, October 04, 2001

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