Presence of Poe
Edgar Allan Poe is regarded as one of the great American writers in history. He had a unique way to present his stories, his imagination stretched into the darkest corners of his mind. One can say his characters were developed from personal experiences in his life. His use of writing techniques was ingenious and unsurpassed. These are just a few reasons why he is a permanent reminder whenever horror stories come to mind.
Edgar Allan Poe was born in Boston on January 19, 1809. His parents were David and Elizabeth Poe. He was one of three children including his brother Henry and his sister Rosalie. His mother separated from his father when he was about two ...view middle of the document...
He barely made enough to support his family, and his wife’s health was slowly fading away. She passed away in 1847, ten days after his thirty-eighth birthday. He went into a deep depression after his wife died, and his health started decreasing. On September 27, 1849, he took a trip to New York, and on his return home to Philadelphia, he took a wrong train to Baltimore. These were the last days of Poe because they found him in Baltimore in a homeless shelter half-conscious; he died on October 7 (Biography).
Edgar Allan Poe’s life was full of hardships. He encountered many deaths throughout his life, and most of those people were his close loved ones. He lived in poor conditions after he left the Allan’s home, and never had a steady job throughout his life. His works although great now, did not fare well then and gain him monetary status. All of these factors are more than enough to cause distress in one’s life. Poe lived this harsh reality, and his works were written through it all. One can assume that his inspiration or ideas were generated from these events. It would be hard not to relate his feelings to his stories or poems. Many of his stories have suggested such ideas tie in with his plots. As examining two stories in detail: The Fall of the House of Usher and The Masque of the Red Death.
The major themes of Poe’s stories were about love, beauty, and death. These could have been inspired by real-life events or dreams. As was mentioned, he experienced many deaths of loved ones but also world events were taking place. The love he wrote about was, in most cases, a destructive force. “Love is the mysterious force which brings together a creative conjunction or communion. But it is also the force which brings them together in frictional disruption. Love is the great force which causes disintegration as well as new life, and corruption as well as procreation. It brings life together with life, either for production or for destruction. And with Poe, love is purely a frictional, destructive force” (Lawrence).
Poe’s tales always focus attention on the narrator or the main character. In The Fall of the House of Usher this “has been interpreted in various ways…” (Quinn). The story is not just the story of a murder case. “It is rather a representation of the experience of dread, as Poe understood this feeling” (Quinn). The story is told from the nameless narrator’s point of view. Few details are known other than he is a childhood friend of Roderick’s. The narrator is not the main character, rather it is Roderick, because it just tells what he observes The story is not told in typical Poe fashion “…where the protagonist tells a personal account of a crime that he or she committed. Instead, the narrator acts like a participant/observer (Womack “Usher“). Roderick along with his sister, Madeline, are “the sole, remaining members of the long time-honored Usher race“ (“Usher“). The Usher race has throughout their existence has been...