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Tell Tale Heart and the Black Cat.

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Tell Tale Heart and The Black Cat.

The two short stories that I have chosen by Edgar Allan Poe are The Tell Tale Heart and The Black Cat. These two stories in particular have many things in common as far as technique goes, but they do have some significant differences between the two. In this paper I will try to compare and contrast these two short stories and hopefully bring something to the readers attention that wasn't there at first.

One of the main differences in these two short stories is the way in which the reader finds out the ending of the stories. In The Black Cat the reader finds out the ending of the story in the traditional format. At the end of the short story. However, in The Tell Tale Heart the reader knows the ending at the very beginning of the story. An advantage of having the story come full circle is that it allows the reader to try and focus on other aspects of the story such as why and how. Poe makes the ending very clear to the reader, in doing this he makes the reader read with anticipation. The anticipation that is created makes the story more enjoyable. The Black Cat is written in the more traditional sense, which has its advantages as well. A traditional way of writing is having the story flow from beginning to end. Poe is able to develop the characters as the story goes along and of course by not knowing the ending the story is full of surprises that make it unpredictable.

Another difference in technique that Poe uses between the two short stories is the way that the anger in placed. In The Tell Tale Heart the main character's anger is placed on the direct object of whom he has problem with, but in The Black Cat the main character chooses to displace his anger on to an animal whom he had no prior qualms with. I think what Poe was trying to convey was that sometimes our anger is directed at the things that really can't fight back, in a normal circumstance (in the story there were supernatural aspects with would not occur in a normal environment). As we read the story and see how the man is displacing his anger we realize that at one time or another we have all done this. Poe exploits this anger for all it is worth, he make the reader get involved without the reader even knowing it.



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