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The Tell-Tale Heart

English short story unit

Sharon Ruiter

on 4 October 2012

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Transcript of The Tell-Tale Heart

The Tell-Tale
Heart Edgar Allan Poe Edgar Allan Poe Summary Point of View Conscience
& Guilt Personification Conscience Poe was born January 19th, 1809 and died at the age of 40. He was a poet, and a literary critic. He was one of the first successful American authors to write innovative science fiction stories. He was also known as the father of the modern detective stories. This story is about a man who has
a mental disease but who does not believe
he is a madman. This disease has him obsessing over another man's eye. As a result of his madness, he murders the old man.

After having dismembered the body, his conscience catches up with him and he admits to his crime. We, as readers, do not know the conclusion of the story because Poe ends it with the confession. This is an unreliable P.O.V. The
writer states he's ill of a
mental disease. He is having internal conflicts about his sanity. It adds an air of mystery and confusion to the story. We
don't know if he's recalling memories, or if it is in fact a
dream or fantasy or if he's hallucinating. "It is impossible to say how first the idea entered my brain; but once conceived, it haunted me day and night."-Poe. This is effective in proving the narrator's madness. He had no motive in killing the old man other than his eye. Yet, the idea of taking his life intrigues him so much that he thinks he MUST do so, if only to rid himself completely of such evil. "It is the beating of his hideous heart"-Poe. As stated; previously, there was only the eye, at first, that disturbed the narrator. Now it is also the heart. As the story goes on, the narrator finds new things to hate about the old man, driving him into complete insanity; resulting in the dismembering of the old man. On the other hand, after having murdered and torn apart his victim, the narrator starts feeling guilty of doing so with no real motive. Some may think the "beating of his hideous heart" may be the narrator hearing his own heart- twinged with guilt and fear. When you do something that is wrong does your conscience affect you? In this story the conscience affects the narrator completely. If he had no conscience he wouldn't have heard "the beating of the heart." He would have easily ignored his wrong doing and continued on with his normal life. Instead, he goes insane and admits to his horrible crime. At first the narrator did not feel guilty about his crime. Later on, that guilt grew and grew as his conscience came into play. GUILT In Pinocchio there are multiple times where he lies. He becomes very guilty and his nose starts to grow. This is just like the narrator because he gets so guilty that he hears the constant heartbeat. The heart beats louder as his guilt grows the same way that Pinocchio's nose. Guilt and Conscience Pinocchio Lying, and it shows Gesticulations What is the definition of: Synonyms:
body language
motion An animated or excited gesture. You may use gesticulations when you're in an argument or when you are trying to show strong feelings about something. Our Definition of Gesticulations The Narrator: He states he is not a madman but he truly is. He is a very mysterious character. We don't learn anything about his appearance or his name. We only know that he is crazy. Character Analysis The Old Man: We know that the narrator had nothing against him, apart from his eye. We know he never mistreated the narrator, and that he was a nice old man. We don't know his name, but we know he is suspicious of the narrator. The Neighbor: This character takes a small but important role in the story. This character is important because he/she hears the old man's scream and informs the officials. The narrator cautiously sets up the murder of the old man. Why do you think he takes so long before actually killing him? Discussion Questions The narrator insists that he is not insane. What characteristics are shown to prove his sanity? What characteristics prove his insanity? Our Stop Motion Reenactment With his parents eminent death, Poe was taken in by an adoptive family. Mr. Allen and his wife were fairly rich, considering the economic situation in those days. Later on, Poe moved out to go to University, but his adoptive father wouldn't help with the funding. Soon after his first year had begun, he spent all of his tuition on alcohol and had to move in with his aunt and cousin. Edgar Allan Poe's Personnel Life His relationship with his younger cousin grew into marriage, even though she was only 12 years old, and he was in his twenties. few years after that, she died of the fatal illness that had taken away both Poe's adoptive mother and his aunt. This may have lead to his unique, eerie writing style. YouTube clip found of
another reenactment
Full transcript