Poe and Neuroticism, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness
Edgar Allen Poe is often thought of as being one of the most depressed and morbid American writers of all time. His fascination with death can be seen in his short stories, such as “The Masque of the Red Death”, and his poetry, such as “Spirits of the Dead”. His tragic life left him with depression, a drinking problem, a suicide attempt, and eventually, an untimely death. Though one could argue that Poe’s depression was due to his unfortunate life, his behaviors and drinking problems, coupled with his argumentative nature and lack of self control point to a personality that is high in neuroticism and low in agreeableness and conscientiousness.
Edgar Allen Poe was born in 1809 to two actors. His father and older brother were both alcoholics. When he was two years old, his father abandoned he and his mother. His mother, being unable to support them both, sent him to live with John and Frances Allen. She died not long after that. The Allen’s gave Poe a good life, but never legally adopted him, which led to him feeling like an outcast. Poe was bullied in school for being the child of actors, which fed into his feeling of not belonging. Poe was later sent to college, and planned to marry Sarah Elmira Royster as soon as he graduated. He eventually had to leave college due to debt, and returned home where he discovered that Sarah was engaged to another man. He then joined West Point Academy for a short time, but did not like it and soon dropped out. After that, Poe moved from job to job until he eventually married his 13 year old cousin, Virginia. Six years later, Virginia fell ill with tuberculosis and died. Poe’s depression deepened, and he later tried to kill ...
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...t Point and then quit soon after, and had a family history of alcoholism. His drinking, depression, anxiety, and irritability all point towards a high level of neuroticism, while his drinking, lack of discipline and occupational success, and argumentativeness all point towards a low level of agreeableness and conscientiousness.
Edgar Allan Poe was a depressed man with a drinking problem and a family history of alcoholism. His sadness and fascination with death and all things macabre can be clearly seen through his writing. He was argumentative, irritable, anxious, professionally and romantically unsuccessful, and lacked self control and discipline. These personality traits, coupled with his own alcoholism in addition to his family history of alcoholism, directly point to a personality that is high in neuroticism and low in agreeableness and conscientiousness.
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Edgar Allen Poe had a very complicated life from his birth. To begin with Edgar was born on January 19, 1809. (Britannica, 2013) In the meantime his father disappeared. Yet no one knows what ever happened to him. Then at age two he went on tour with his mother where he watched her die. (Britannica, 2013) To be more specific she kept spiting up blood and soon died of Tuberculoses. Afterwards Edgar was adopted by Frances and John Allan.
When we discovered John’s body the following morning after he had left my house I couldn’t bring myself to believe that he had gotten lost in the blizzard. I know this blizzard was a bad one, we haven’t had one like that for quiet a while, but still John knows this land better than anyone. I really started to think that there was more to his death than a directional mishap. Just the location and direction his body was found in was enough alone to lead it to be suspicious.
As one can see, Harriet, Dick and Reverend Lewis Merrill, even though they are all minor characters, affect the major characters, such as Johnny and Owen with their identity, or personality. Without these characters, the novel would never be the same. As Alan Rudolph said, “Human identity is the most fragile thing that we have, and it's often only found in moments of truth.”
“[Has] there always been something between himself and the boy that neither of them understood? “No.” he said to himself. “No, it’s your fault. It’s always been your fault.” (76) The Father realizes how oblivious he has been towards Johnny’s needs. It has always been his fault for not being there for Johnny. He does not know a single thing that is currently happening in Johnny's life. John was blind to how important this banquet was to his son. All John did by going was make the tension between father and son grow with a negative impact. His lack of effort towards reconciliation, actions of betrayal and embarrassment are the reason he is at fault. He can not blame Johnny for his actions because having a drunk father who lifts you in the air and then nearly knocks over a table is embarrassing. I believe the point at which John begins to have his epiphany is when he was talking to Johnny on the way to the banquet. “As they passes the schoolyard he asked the boy how the softball team was doing.... He [realizes] the he [did not] even know what position his own son played, or even the name of the team.” (68) (69) That makes it clear that John does not attend any of his sons games. That means he is not getting much attention from his father. His father showed signs of marginalization towards Johnnys needs but seems like he has changed by the end of the
Conclusion: Edgar Allen Poe suffered from what is now known as manic depression, and his gothic tales and dark poetry are direct examples of how life influences art. His works may not have been as controversial had he not lived a life of poverty, addiction, and tragedy. Some might say his work was way ahead of his time. But he wrote about things going on around him, like murder and grave robberies. He used imagery and setting to make his stories seem more realistic. His tales could easily be made into movies in today’s times.
John’s quest to be closer to God was phenomenal. I too have had a rocky relationship with my father and like John has had to fight the demons caused by that relationship and atoned for them. It is very important to practice forgiveness. I believe that John has done that. Hatred is a heavy burden to bare, and lead to destruction. I believe through his newfound relationship with God, he will forgive then rebuild his relationship with his father. And has proven to me that he’s embarked on his quest with integrity and dignity.
Several aspects of Edgar Allan Poe’s life are well known because of his popularity in American literature. Commonly known facts include, but are not limited to knowing that Poe greatly influenced the horror genre of writing, published many famous poems, and that he is credited with creating detective-fiction. One aspect of his life, however, is not as common. Poe suffered from a cognitive disorder presently known as dementia, which, in Poe’s case, worsened throughout his life. This had a negative effect on many aspects of Poe’s health, but his condition did help contribute to the stories and poems he created. Edgar Allan Poe’s progressive dementia influenced his gothic mind, which he set and used as a starting point for his many literary works.
Edgar Allan Poe was born in Boston, Massachusetts, on January 19, 1809. He was born to two poor actors, David Poe and Elizabeth Arnold Poe. David Poe was born to a good Baltimore family. He was known as a heavy drinker, and soon after Edgar was born, left his mother and Edgar’s two other siblings. Elizabeth was thought to be charming and talented, but she died an early death. She died of tuberculosis at the age of twenty-four. Edgar was only three years old. The death of his mother ruined Edgar for the rest of his life. Edgar’s brother, WIlliam Henry Leonard Poe, also came to be a poet, but he had a n early demise. His sister, Rosalie Poe, grew up to teach penmanship. Edgar and his siblings were separated from each other after the death of their parents).Shortly after, Edgar was taken in by John and Frances Allan. John was a successful tobacco merchant. Edgar moved to England with the Allans and went to school in England from 1815 to 1820. Edgar and David did not see eye to eye at all. John wanted Edgar to be a businessman and a Virginian gentleman, but Edgar aspired to become a writer. By the time Edgar began college at the University of Virginia in 1826, he barely communicated or received support from the Allans. Edgar was a wonderful student but a terrible gambler. He soon accumulated a considerable amount of debt because John sent him to university with a measly amount of money. He did not have enough for expenses which led him to gambling. He was so poor and desperate that he burned his furniture to keep warm. Humiliated, he returned home to Richmond to discover that his fiancée, Elmira Royster, was engaged to another man. His stay at the Allan mansion was cut very short because of the increasing tension b...
Edgar Allan Poe was born in Boston, Massachusetts on January 19, 1809. His parents, who were actors, died when Poe was a small child. Poe was then adopted and raised by John Allan, a tobacco exporter, and Frances Allan in Richmond, Virginia (Magill, 1640). Poe was sent to the best schools because of Allan’s job. When Poe was six years old he was sent to private school. Poe kept studying and went to the University of Virginia for one year. After one year in the University Poe quit school because Allan refused to pay his debts, and he did not have money to pay for Poe’s education. Later, Poe left Boston in 1827 where he enlisted in the army. Poe served two years in the military after he quit school. After two years in the military Poe was dismissed for neglect of duty. His foster father then disowned him permanently. He stayed very little time there because Allan, once again, refused to send Poe any money. (Hoffman, Daniel)
The life of Edgar Allan Poe, was stuffed with tragedies that all affected his art. From the very start of his writing career, he adored writing poems for the ladies in his life. When he reached adulthood and came to the realization of how harsh life could be, his writing grew to be darker and more disturbing, possibly as a result of his intense experimenting with opium and alcohol. His stories continue to be some of the most frightening stories ever composed, because of this, some have considered this to be the reason behind these themes. Many historians and literature enthusiasts have presumed his volatile love life as the source while others have credited it to his substance abuse. The influence of his one-of-a-kind writing is more than likely a combination of both theories; but the main factor is the death of many of his loved ones and the abuse which he endured. This, not surprisingly, darkened his perspective considerably.
Pruette, Lorine. “A Psycho-Analytical study of Edgar Allan Poe.” Ther American Jounal of Psychology.31.4 (1920): 370-402. University of Illinois Press. Web. 28 March 2014.
Edgar Allan Poe born on January 19, 1809, was known as the creator of the modern detective story and innovator of the science fiction genre. Although, people identify him because of his horror stories as well as his haunting lyric poetry, there was a different side of him other than a gruesome, mysterious individual prowling in the shadows of moonlit cemeteries. Poe’s childhood was very tragic and affected his adult life when growing up. Poe was the second son of actors David and Elizabeth Poe. Shortly after Poe was born, his father abandoned the family in 1810 and the following death of his twenty-four year old mother in 1811, left Poe an orphan at the young age of three. Poe was adopted by a guy named john, who was a strict unemotional tobacco merchant and his wife Frances Allan, a week women with health issues. His original grandparents only took in his brother William Henry instead of Poe. He was educated with his father’s aid, in private schools, excelling in latin, writing verse, and declamation. Regardless of his education Poe was looed down upon and was considered an outsider by the upper class of Richmond society. It maybe because his foster parents never legally adopted Poe and also regarding his family background. In Poe’s time adulthood did not support actors in high manners, which this could have been attributed to his reputation. Poe childhood shaped him to be one of the most Famous creative poet there is.
“Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest of intelligence,” Edgar Allan Poe. Poe is famous in the writing world and has written many amazing stories throughout his gloomy life. At a young age his parents died and he struggled with the abuse of drugs and alcohol. A great amount of work he created involves a character that suffers with a psychological problem or mental illness. Two famous stories that categorize Poe’s psychological perspective would be “The Fall of the House of Usher” and “The Tell-Tale Heart.” Both of these stories contain many similarities and differences of Poe’s psychological viewpoint.