How Does Edgar Allan Poe Create Suspense

The Tell-Tale Heart is a short story by Edgar Allan Poe that was first published in 1843. The story is about a man who kills an old man because he is afraid of the man’s eye. The man tries to cover up the crime, but the guilt eventually drives him insane.

The story is told from the killer’s point of view, which creates a feeling of suspense and terror. The Tell-Tale Heart is one of Poe’s most famous stories, and it is still studied and analyzed by scholars today. The story has been adapted to film and television numerous times, and it continues to be a popular source of inspiration for artists across all mediums.

“The Tell-Tale Heart” Outline What would you do if your eye never let you alone, day or night? That’s what the narrator had to cope with in Edgar Allan Poe’s The Tell True Heart. In the tale, the house of the elderly man serves as a setting. The Narrator wants to get rid of both the sound and sight of the deceased guy’s broken heart.

The old man’s eye symbolizes the never ending watch of guilt. The sound of the man’s heart represents the ticking of the time bomb of conscience. The Narrator overcomes his fears and decides to take action on the 8th night. The old man wakes up from a noise that the narrator made, but goes back to sleep. The next morning, the police come to investigate a scream that was heard in the night.

The officers conduct a search of the house, but nothing is found. The officers leave and the Narrator triumphantly exclaims that he has gotten away with murder! However, the Narrator’s conscience starts to bother him and he eventually confesses to the crime. The Tell-Tale Heart is a story about the dangers of suppressing guilt. The story also serves as a warning about the dangers of over-valuing material possessions.”

However, owing to his concern for the elderly guy, he will later murder himself. He would also wish to silence the sound of the departed man’s heart in the same way. Because the Narrator had gone insane and mad, he wanted to hear the late man’s heart. Another reason why hearing the deceased man’s heart might have been necessary is because there was a guilty conscience with

The heart may have represented the man’s life and once it stopped, he died. The sound of the heartbeat could have also symbolized how time was ticking away and eventually, the old man would die. The ticking may have also meant that the old man knew about the evil plotted against him and that his time was running out.

The heart may have also been a “tell-tale” itself since it betrayed the true feelings of the Narrator. The heart could have beating faster due to nervousness or anxiety which would then give away that something was not right. The sound of the heartbeat in this story created suspense because readers were wondering when and how the old man would die.

The suspense builds up when the Narrator starts to feel guilty and paranoid about the old man’s eye. The old man’s eye may have represented the All-Seeing Eye or God since it seemed to watch him wherever he went. The eye could also have symbolized the Narrator’s own conscience since it was constantly staring back at him and making him feel guilty.

The eye may have also been a “tell-tale” itself since it gave away the fact that the Narrator was up to no good. The sound of the heartbeat and the old man’s eye created suspense because readers were wondering when and how the old man would die.

The narrator describes how the elderly man’s eye was melancholy and weird to him. With the language by Poe, the reader can essentially picture the old man’s eye. This instills suspense in the reader because it displays them an unsettling image of what the deranged Narrator saw. Repetition is also used effectively by the author to create suspense. Take, for example, “I moved it slowly- very, very slowly – so that I would not wake up

The repetition of the words “very” and “slowly” makes the reader feel as if they are in the room with the narrator, going through the same painstaking process. The feeling of suspense is also created when the old man suddenly wakes up from his sleep. The author writes “He turned over heavily on his side away from me, and I continued my watch”(Poe 90).

The use of heavy implies that the old man is weighted down by something, which in turn makes the reader feel as if something bad is about to happen. The suspense is also increased when “The heartbeat increased its tempo”(Poe 91). This suggests that not only is the Narrator feeling paranoid, but also the reader is feeling the same way.

The use of first person allows the reader to feel as if they are in the story, and experiencing everything that the Narrator is. The author also uses foreshadowing when he writes “I knew that sound well too. It was the beating of the old man’s heart”(Poe 91). The readers know that something bad is about to happen, because they have been primed by the suspenseful atmosphere that has been created throughout the story.

Poe repeats this statement to build suspense. Second, Poe does this for us as readers so that we may easily understand what is going on. When Poe says “but the heart’s throb grew louder and louder,” he adds more repetition (Poe 92). The hearts of people who love each other grow stronger with time.

The sound is so sudden and harsh that it makes the readers feel suspense. The heart now controls the old man, and the murderer. The suspense in “The Tell-Tale Heart” comes from not knowing when the old man will die, if he will die, and how gruesomely he will die. These factors all play into making “The Tell-Tale Heart” a suspenseful story.

Poe creates suspense in “The Tell-Tale Heart” in a few different ways. The first way Poe does this is by constantly repeating the words “true” and “surely”(Poe 88). The repetition of these words makes the reader second guess if what the murderer is saying is actually true. The reader does not know if the narrator can be trusted which creates suspense.

The second way Poe creates suspense is by having long spans of time in between when the old man’s heart is beating. The reader does not know when the next time the old man’s heart will beat, making them feel suspenseful. The third and final way Poe creates suspense is by not revealing what happens to the old man’s body. The readers are left wondering what happened to him, creating a sense of suspense.

The three ways Poe creates suspense all work together to create a feeling of uneasiness in the story. The first way builds up the second and third way. If the reader does not know if they can trust the narrator, they will also be unsure of when the old man’s heart will beat next. The second and third way work together because they both leave the reader with unanswered questions. The suspense created in “The Tell-Tale Heart” is successful in making the story scary and leaving the reader wanting more.

In conclusion, suspense is created in The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe through the use of sound and symbol. The sound of the heartbeat creates suspense because readers are wondering when and how the old man will die. The old man’s eye also creates suspense because it is a symbol of the Narrator’s conscience and it is constantly staring back at him, making him feel guilty. The suspense in this story keeps readers guessing until the very end.

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