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Comparison of "the Black Cat" and "the Tell-Tale Heart"

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Comparison of "The Black Cat" and "The Tell-Tale Heart"

Both "The Black Cat" and "The Tell-Tale Heart", written by Edgar Allan Poe, depict how murderers can conceal the remains of their victims. The cover-ups in these two stories show two similar, but different cover-ups. Both men buried their victims within the structures of the homes, in the same rooms they killed them in. They also shared the same arrogance and pride in the work they had done. A small similarity that the reader of both stories should also notice is that the pride of the men's jobs was evident even when the police officers showed up to investigate, and they both dared to mingle with the police officers where the grave sites were. However, there is a major difference between the two stories. On the one hand, the cat and the wife in "The Black Cat" were buried in the wall. This was a flawed cover-up because the cat was still alive. Although the narrator in "The Black Cat" did not know he made a mistake, he was still proud of his great cosmetic job. "I prepared a plaster which could not be distinguished from the old, and with this I very carefully went over the new brick-work. When I had finished, I felt satisfied that all was right. The wall did not present the slightest appearance of having been disturbed" (Poe 114). On the other hand, the old man in "The Tell-Tale Heart" was chopped up, and then buried underneath the planks in the floor. "I then replaced the boards so cleverly, so cunningly, that no human eye-not even his-could have detected any thing wrong. There was nothing to wash out-no stain of any kind-no blood-spot whatever. I had been too wary for that. A tub had caught all-ha! ha!" (Poe 77) The cover-up in "The Tell-Tale Heart" was not flawed. No animal or human had been buried alive in "The Tell-Tale Heart" Probably the most horrendous yet fascinating part of committed murders, is the way the criminal tries to conceal the victims without a trace.



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