Psychosis and Guilt in The Tell-Tale Heart Essay

Psychosis and Guilt in The Tell-Tale Heart Essay

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In Edgar Allan Poe’s ‘The Tell-Tale Heart,” the narrator explains how he is not mad, how cautious he is in planning a murder. A person can argue however with the narrator of ‘The Tell-Tale Heart’, which he is indeed mad. The anxiety the narrator experiences through out the story makes him mad, it is also the guilt that brought on more anxiety to the narrator at the end of the story. The narrator constantly speaks of how he is not mad; he constantly as the reader why would they think he is mad. “True! –nervous-very, very, dreadfully nervous. I had been and still am; but why will you say that I am mad?” (Poe 884). The narrator does not believe that he is a mad man, much less have any mental issues. In “Overview: ‘The Tell-Tale Heart’” the author states “It immediately suggest the mental instability that the narrator will continue to deny through the remainder of the story. He insist that he carefully planned, stealthy manner in which he murdered the old man and dismembered and hid the corpse was to clever an accomplishment for an insane man” (Howes). It is clear that the narrator of the story is indeed, mad. Even though a person who has a mental issue (e.g. “mad”) may not have a strong enough conscience to feel guilt, the motive is both guilt and psychosis in “The Tell-Tale Heart.” The narrator had no humane reason to kill a loved one, the guilt when the narrator murders the old man made his anxiety grow more so when the narrator planed the murder out.
In the “Tell-Tale Heart,” the narrator believes that a disease has made his senses better, and that his heightened senses helped him plan out the murder of the old man he loves, “The disease had sharpened my senses-not destroyed-not dulled them” (Poe 884). The narrator states that...


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...r. That the narrator was indeed crazy, he murders a friend, a loved one over an eye. The eye that haunts him day and night, the eye that when it falls on the narrators makes his blood run cold alone drives the narrator crazy. The narrator has a hard time wanting to kill the old man while he is asleep. After the murder, the guilt builds inside the narrator and anxiety increases to the point where he burst out in truth of the murder to the police sitting in the same room as him.



Works Cited

Overview: “The Tell-Tale Heart”.Characters in 19th-Century Literature. Ed. Kelly King Howes. Detroit: Gale Research,1993. Word Count: 934. From Literature Resource Center.
An overview of 'The Tell-Tale Heart,'. John Chua.Gale Online Encyclopedia. Detroit: Gale. Word Count: 1593. From Literature Resource Center.
Poe, Edgar Allan. The Tell-Tale Heart. Lisa Moore. 2004. Print.

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