Comparison of two short stories by E.A Poe

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uppladdat: 2007-05-14
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The black cat and The Tell-Tale Heart are two short horror stories with madness as the central theme. The narrators of the both stories are the main characters, and they share their story with the intention to prove that they are not mad. However, they do not convince me.
The narrators are two mad men and their tales are fairly similar. Both of the men begin their stories by making the statement “you might think I am mad but I am not”. And in the end of their tales they are to self assured, almost as they want the police to disclose their deeds. This is actually a very common action by murderers. They often leave enough traces so that the police might catch them.
The outlines of the stories are almost a copy of each other and the differences can only bee found in the actual text. One difference that I have noticed is that in The Black Cat you experience the change of the man’s behaviour as a reader while you in The Tell-Tale Heart are directly thrown into the action of the horrible deed. The big differences of the stories are found in their ends. In The Tell-Tale Heart the man has planned the murder out in every detail, but he has not count on his guilt to haunt him. In The Black Cat the murder is fully unintentional but the man does not have any sense of guilt. This is a very strange phenomenon as the murder of the old man is premeditated while the murder of the wife is caused accidentally. I think that the man in The Tell-Tale Heart has spent too much time planning the perfect murder that he doesn’t have time dealing with his own thoughts and in the opposite way the narrator in The Black Cat only react by instinct and hasn’t time to feel guilt.
An other difference is the sounds that can be heard before the police catch the men. While the beating of the dead man’s heart only is imagined in The Tell-Tale Heart is the shriek of the cat in The Black Cat there for everyone to hear. This is also connected to the two perpetrators sense of guilt.
I have not read anything like these two stories before. I usually stick to detective stories and fantasy books and the horror novels are generally low prioritized. Therefore it was really fun to read these short stories. While reading the tales, and especially The Bla...

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Christoferp Karlsson [2007-05-14]   Comparison of two short stories by E.A Poe
Mimers Brunn [Online]. http://mimersbrunn.se/article?id=8163 [2017-11-21]

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