Literary Analysis on Poe's Writing

Aaron Tsuprun
Period 4 English

Literary Analysis on Poe’s Writing

In Edgar Allen Poe’s series of short stories, many symbols can be found that help develop these stories. Symbols can range from anything, whether it is a character, a figure, or even a color. But even though symbols are almost always different in every story, they all have one universal purpose, to represent ideas and concepts. More importantly, Poe uses these symbols, along with a dark setting, to develop the characters and themes found throughout the course of his short stories. Particularly in his stories, symbols range from anything to eyes, animals, drugs and alcohol, and even walls. Poe’s writing style and use of symbolism is a great example on how a short story should be written. Symbols and setting are essential in the creation of a story, especially if you want the story to be good.
A very important symbol found in a number of Poe’s short stories are the eyes. Eyes are a very important symbol in Poe’s stories, and this symbol most definitely helps build the plot for some of these stories. Like in “The Tell-Tale Heart,” for example, the narrator grows paranoid from the idea that the old man’s “vulture eye” is always staring at him. The narrator believes that the eye is planting a curse on him, and this drives him even more insane. The narrator becomes consumed by the eye, and makes it his sole duty to try to rid the old man of it. But the narrator later states that the eye is part of the man’s identity, and cannot be removed without taking the old man’s life.
Similarly, in both “The Black Cat,” and “Ligeia,” eyes are also very symbolic in the story. In “Ligeia,” Ligeia’s mysterious eyes symbolize her dark identity. The narrator in the story cannot see past her eyes, and because of this, is constantly tormented by them. Likewise in “The Black Cat,” where the narrator is also plagued by eyes, in this case his cat Pluto’s. After a drinking binge, the narrator comes home...