Literature plays an important role as a part of the cultural heritage. Thus, literature is the soul of our civilization, the center of our religion, and the machine we can travel back in the time of our old civilizations. In addition, literary works are able to take the readers beyond the limited experiences of readers’ lives. They show the lives of others. The literary works covey the social, political, and cultural backgrounds of the time when the stories or novels were written. The author of the book, “The Death of the Author,” Roland Barthes expresses that authors are always the agents of their times. According to the statement conducted by Roland, to get the fully understanding of the text, he recommends the reader to discover the historical context of it. Thus, the readers can benefit much wider and deeper information of the text. I have chosen the short story of Edgar Allen Poe, “The Fall of the House of Usher.” To analyze the historical background of the story, the brief biography and personal impacts of the author shouldn’t be omitted. Since Poe is the writer who created the story, his perception over the time period when he wrote the story influenced it. Thus, the situation of the time period or historical background wrote the story in turn. “The Fall of the House of Usher” distributed the knowledge of the cultural and philosophical ideas that influenced in Poe’s time.
Edgar Allen Poe was born on January 19, 1809. Unfortunately, his childhood life was hard. His parents got divorce, and his mother took the children. Just a year after they separated, Poe’s mother died in 1811. A childless couple, Mr. and Mrs. John Allan, fostered Poe. At the age of eighteen Poe wrote and printed his fir...
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...tury affected the storyline of “The Fall of the House of Usher.”
The researching the historical contexts of the story, “The Fall of the House of Usher,” received the deeper understanding of the text. The 19th century culture of eating opium in the United States was revealed in the story. This was the reason why Poe wrote the disgusted emotion of the narrator upon seeing the old House of Usher with a metaphor of the opium eater. The culture of the Romanticism traveled from Europe to America was discovered, and the influence of the critical property of Romantic literature was seen. The role of women in the early 19th century was highlighted in the story. In addition, the significant of amount of people had the good habit of reading reflected the literacy rate in the 19th of America. Thence, the story of Poe can be considered as an American classical literature.
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