Poe's Motifs- Familiar, Yet Different

Poe’s Motifs- Familiar, Yet Different
What motifs does Edgar Allan Poe use? He actually has several recurring themes- but why? Why is Poe drawn to these things to use in his works? Some are related to his life, and some just enhance the stories. Three of the many motifs that Poe uses are death, animals, and masquerades.
Poe had several pets, he loved animals- which would explain why he uses them so much in his stories. In The Tell Tale Heart the murderer dehumanize his victim by comparing him to an animal. The narrator claims to hate and murder the old man's “vulture eye,” which he describes as “pale blue with a film over it.” In Murders in the Rue Morgue, the joke behind the crime is that the Ourang-Outang did it. The total ridiculousness of the crime baffles the police, who can’t think of who would commit a motiveless crime with such brute force. Dupin uses his brilliance to determine that the crime just couldn’t have been done by a human. In The Black Cat, the murder of Pluto results from the narrator’s insanity and alcoholism, the second cat however, behaves more cunningly, tricking the narrator into murdering his wife, and then meowing behind the wall the narrator covered her up with, alerting the police that someone was behind it. Earlier in the story, the narrator mentions he loves animals- much like Poe- and his parents gave him birds, fish, a dog, rabbits, a small monkey, and a cat. In the Cask of Amontillado, Montresor mentions in his family arms there is a serpent with its large fangs in the heel of a foot stepping on it, and the motto “no one harms me with impunity”
The second recurring theme Poe has used is masquerades. You’ll recall his use of balls and parties in a lot of his stories. For example, in The Cask of Amontillado, Montresor uses the carnival’s masquerade to fool Fortunato into his own demise. Masquerades carry the traditional meanings of joy and social liberation, reality is suspended, and people can assume another identity. In...