Motifs of The Tell-Tale Heart and William Wilson... : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread

What are 2 repeated motifs and how does he change then some to create different effects in eac of the stories!? HELP ME PLEASE!!!!

-- Anonymous, October 16, 2001


The two narrator-main characters are a little off the deep end. Each has a paranoid obsession of persecution by an enemy. Each strives to murder the object of their fear/hatred and in so doing destroy themselves. Two motifs: obsession, murder?

it is odd that the fully interiorized fantasies of the Tell-Tale Heart murderer are easier to separate from the events while in William Wilson the confusion between the two lookalikes(if indeed the second man ever existed!) casts its cloud even over the ending. Was the "murderer" in William Wilson, who destroyed himself first morally(see Oscar Wilde's Dorian Gray)haunted by an imaginary twin?("The Other" by Tom Tryon)I mention two later books because those stories have no such questionable interpretation, at least at the end.

In the Heart tale it is first the dead eye then the dead heart of the man which becomes a living demon obsessing the narrator. In Wilson it is the rivalry, the mirroring and disquieting doppleganger competition that seems to turn the narrator against himself. So inward he's outwardly manifesting his other self? Ironically it is like the murderer in the Heart tale who mistakes the beating of his own heart for that of his dead victim.

Well, this is a start. Maybe you need to do more which will only work if you do the two things your teacher expects as a minimum: read and compare!

-- Anonymous, October 16, 2001

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