Poe - the tension of atmosphere which can be linked back to...

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Poe’s use of structure in the Tell-Tale Heart Jacky Chong Edgar Allan Poe uses a structure of general increasing trends to portray the theme of the Tell-Tale Heart. Different aspects of the story can be defined as increasing. For example, the number of rhetorical questions and repetitions used, the rate and volume of heart beat, the speed of speech and the length of sentences are all throughout the story. This unity effect of increasing trends mirrors the theme of the story, which is an insight into the increasing paranoia and mental deterioration of a madman. In addition, an increasing state of imagery can be observed. At the beginning, Poe focuses on describing the pale blue eye of the old man, which is a cold, placid imagery; in contrast, the pale blue eye is later replaced by the red beating heart, which is a warm, violent imagery. The increasing state of temperature and excitement in imagery helps building up
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Unformatted text preview: the tension of atmosphere, which can be linked back to the theme of the increasing paranoia of a madman. The story begins in medias res and ends without resolution in climax. This is an abnormal structure for a shot story, but Poe does it on deliberately. Poe starts the story in the middle instead of from its beginning, and introduces characters, setting, and conflict through the flashback of the narrator confessing his guilt. This use of literary technique increases the curiosity of readers and hence contributes to the formation of the tension of the atmosphere. The hasty ending leaves greater space and extent for readers’ imagination, thus increases the story’s entertainment. Poe’s alternative use of structure is what we call “style”. Style plays an significant role in Art, because it is the identity of an artist....
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This note was uploaded on 12/31/2011 for the course LANG 111 taught by Professor Lancebeck during the Spring '11 term at Ave Maria.

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