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Edgar Allen Poe

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Edgar Allan Poe

In the short essay Russell Baker starts out as a child whose is confused and does not like English or any subject relating to English classes. After reading a topic of a short story he was assigned to write. The topic brought back memories to Baker and made him think of a experience that occurred in his life. The results Baker received from his teacher Mr.Fleagle and his class mates. Baker realized he could give people the enjoyment through his writing. In similar relation Eolgar Allen Poe also experienced a rough childhood.

With both of his parents dying around the same time. Being put into orphan homes had a big bearing on Poe. He never let that stop him, because any free time or extra energy he had. Poe used it writing poetry.

The brief life of a brilliant writer Edgar Allen Poe began on January 19,1809 in Boston, Massachusetts. Poe was the second son of Actor David Poe Jr. and Actress Elizabeth Arnold Hopkins Poe. David Poe was far from the ideal father. He was an avid drinker and eventually abandoned his family in December of 1810, forcing Elizabeth Poe into the position of sole provider for the family. Poe’s mother supported him and his younger sister, Rosalie, u until her death on December 8, 1811 from Tuberculosis. In 1812 the orphaned Poe children found homes. Baby Rosalie was adopted by the Mackenzie family while Edgar was taken in by the Allans in Richmond. Edgar was raised as a son by the Allans but never officially adopted by them. On March 18, 1827, a ongoing conflict erupted between Poe and Allan resulting in Poe’s return to his birth city of Boston. Poe enlisted in the u.s. army in mid- 1827. Poe served stints at Fort Independence in Boston, Fort Moultrie in Charleston, and Fort Monroe in Virginal. Poe’s “acting” mother Frances Allan passed away on February 28, 1829. Poe was discharged from the army on April 15 of 1829. In May of 1831 Poe moved in with his Aunt Maria Clemm and his nine year old cousin Virginia; who would later become his wife. While living with his Aunt Poe renewed his relationship with his elder brother Henry. Henry died later that year of Tuberculosis. From 1829 up until his death Poe spent most of his energy writing articles for magazines and trying to launch his career as a legitimate author/poet. Poe’s cousin-wife Virginia expired from Tuberculosis on January 30, 1847. In October of 1849 while Baltimore Poe fell into the hands of political thugs who forced alcohol upon him and then proceeded to carry him from precinct to precinct as a “repeat” voter who forced alcohol upon him and forced him to become a repeat voter. Then then abandoned him in the street. Poe was found and taken to Washington College Hospital where he died four days later on October 7, 1849 at the age of forty.

As a writer Edgar Allan Poe was hailed as both a genius and an incompetent. Charles Baudelaire was one of Poe’s greatest supporters. Baudelaire translated Poe’s tales into French and is responsible for Poe’s popularization in France. Baudelaire wrote a passage on pie entitled “American Genius.” In this passage Baudelaire writes of his admiration for Poe’s Literary works. He expressed special interest in Poe’s ability to unnerve readers with his writing. (Lucado) In the passages “American Genius,” Baudelaire writes, “… he causes the absurd to establish itself in one’s mid and controls it with frightful logic; … he weighs the imponderable and described in a meticulous and scientific manner, the effects of which are terrible, all that imaginary world which floats around a very nervous man and leads him into evil. (Churchill 3)

For all of Poe’s followers there are just as many who dispute his accomplishments as a writer, one of theses critics is Aldous Huxley. Aldous disputes Baudelaire’s opinion on pie as a major writer in his excerpt entitled, “Poe as a Terrible Poet” and says directly that they are wrong for believing so. In this passage he also writes of the vulgarity of Poe’s writing form by saying, “The substance of Poe is refined; it is his form that is vulgar.” He also compares the solecism in Poe’s writing to the wearing of a diamond ring on every finger; by saying it is a hard offense to forgive. (17) Huxley also says that the magic that Baudelaire points out in Poe’s works “evaporates into abracadabrical absurdity and becomes its own mocking parody.” (Von Deer Oyleyen)

Although the value of Edgar Allan Poe’s work has been questioned by several outspoken critics it is evident that Poe has had a heavy influence on other writers. Author Jeffery Myers claims in his book Edgar Allan Poe: His Life and Legacy, that Poe’s greatest legacy is the influence he has had on other writers. Myers says Edgar Allan Poe’s influence can be seen in the writings of some of America’s best writers, including F. Scott Fitzgerald, Herman Melville, Vladimir Nabokov, and Tom Wolfe.

Edgar Allan Poe has written several short stories including “The Cask of Amontillado,” “The Masque of the Red Death,” and “The Tell-Tale Heart.” (Poe 42)

“The Cask of Amontillado” is a short story about the “perfect crime,” born out of revenge. In this story Montesor runs into Forunato at a carnival, which whom he has vowed to get his revenge. Apparently Fortunato has in some way offended or in some way been harmful to Montresor, but it never goes antidotal on the matter. Montesor lures Fortunato into the catacombs and proceeds to intoxicate him. Montresor then shackles Fortunato to the wall and leaves him there to die. Montresor becomes haunted by this crime in later life. Montresor fails to achieve the “perfect vengeance” that compelled him because he becomes obsessed with proving that he has conquered Fortunato. (Poe 25) This obsession proves that Montesor has not carried out the perfect revenge and in fact shows that the revenge has consumed him.

“The Masque of the Red Death’ is a take that presents the age-old theme of the inevitability of death. The story opens with a recounting of a plague, the “Red Death;” it describes its long devastation of the country and gives a description of the process of the disease. Prince Prospero invites the nobility of the land to seek refuge and entertainment in his “castellated



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