Create a new account

It's simple, and free.

Tell-Tale Heart

In the short story “The Tell-Tale Heart” by Edgar Allan Poe, the main theme is portrayed by the narrator and how he is unreliable and insane no matter how hard he tries to prove to the audience that he is not. One of the most important aspects of narrative is person, which often determines the perspective from which a story is told. A first-person narrative involves the main character telling a story from his own perspective. The narrator starts the story by explaining to the reader that he is not mad but sane; he believes that his killing is like methodical. With these sick plans, it is amazing how the author makes the narrator so sick, twisted and unreliable. “It took me an hour to place my whole head within the opening so far that I might not disturb the old man’s sleep.”(E.A.P p.197) For one thing, his reason for committing the murder is neither for money nor for a passion for killing but rather because he feared the old man’s pale blue eyes, “For his gold I had no desire. I think it was his eye! Yes, it was this this! He had the eye of a vulture-a pale blue eye with a film over it.”(p.197) Even after this, he does not believe he is crazy. Clearly to the audience, this character is flawed with insanity. By obsessively checking up on the old man, in his apartment late at night, the intensity of his fear and anger grow until he decides one day that he must end the old man’s life. While making his usual checking up on the old man, the former wakes up and shrieks in fear knowing that there is someone in the room with him. Staying perfectly still, the narrator observes that this old man is very fearful and stays up thinking about it. Also keeping him up, is what he believes is the loud terrified heartbeat of the old man and he worries that because of it’s intensity, the neighbors may wake up. Afraid that the neighbors might hear it, he slays the old man and dismembers him; he lays the pieces of the body under the...

Page 1 of 3 Next >

Related Essays:

APA     MLA     Chicago
Tell-Tale Heart. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 14:43, September 01, 2014, from