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сочинение Poe does not give his readers any clue. That is why the puzzles of his tales will never be solved, no matter how many times you have read them.


Тип работы: сочинение. Предмет: Литература. Добавлен: 07.04.2006. Сдан: 2006. Уникальность по antiplagiat.ru: --.

Описание (план):

Pavel Pushkov
Professor Fanning
English 71
30 March 2006
Was Poe being Ironic When He Wrote “The Black Cat”?
Do you not have a strange sensation when you read Edgar Poe? I do. It is like a fear of darkness, a fear of something so huge and terrible that we, humans, are unable to understand.
A boy was reading a book. He had started the work several hours earlier, and just was not able to put the stories aside. His parents ordered him to go to bed and to turn the lights off, but the kid continued reading under the cover using a flashlight. He was under a blanket for two reasons. First, he did not want to disturb his strict father. Second, it was less frightening. The boy kept reading till he finished the last page, and closed the book. He was a little scared, excited, and very confused. For a while, the kid lay with his eyes opened vainly trying to understand what that phantom ship, mummy, and a black cat were, but soon, he gave up and fell asleep. The book was Edgar Poe's short stories, and the boy was me.
Many years have passed, but I still do not have an answer to the question: “What are Poe's demons?” Are they real demons from hell? Do they exist only in his characters' minds? Are there no demons at all and does the author just attempt to intrigue his audience? Let us analyze Poe's “
The Black Cat” and try to understand if the author writes about real demons, describes hallucinations of an insane protagonist, or is being ironic and plays with his readers?
If Poe writes about ghosts, the discovery of a cat's portrait on a wall of the burned house is a very important episode. It is important for two reasons. First, this is, in my opinion, the only scene that cannot be explained logically. Where did the picture come from? The main character supposes that when the fire started, somebody “must have […] cut [a dead animal] from the tree and [threw it], through an open window, into [main character's] chamber” to wake him up (300). Would it not be much easier and faster to throw a stone or a branch of a tree through the window to wake the main character up? This explanation does not sound serious. Also, the hero believes that “the falling of […] walls had compressed the [cat] into the […] freshly-spread plaster; the lime of which, had then with the flames, and the ammonia from the carcass, accomplished the portraiture as [the main character] saw it “ (301). Could this chain of events really happen? It is more than unlikely.
Second, the portrait of the cat cannot be a hallucination because many people can see it. When the narrator comes to his burned place, he finds “a dense crowd […] examining a particular portion of [the remaining wall] with eager attention” (301). He hears the “words "strange!" "singular!" and other similar expressions” (301). “When [an] excited” main character comes closer, he sees “as if graven in bas-relief upon the white surface, the figure of a gigantic cat” (301). Of course, the whole group of people could be just a hallucination of an insane man. Also, it is possible that the main character was the only one who could see the picture, and the rest of the people are excited by something else. I, however, do not believe that the writer means something like this; he, probably, writes about a ghost. Further on in the story, we meet a lot of mysterious things, but all of them can be explained rationally.
The second cat is, probably, the most mysterious figure in the story. What is it: a ghost, a hallucination, or just a normal animal that looks like Pluto? Can the new Pluto be a ghost? Yes, it can. Let us remember the plot of the story. The protagonist used to be a most good and kind man. His character changes, and he becomes a maniac. He brutally killed the cat. After that, the main character “[regrets] the loss of the animal, and started looking for “another pet […] of somewhat similar appearance” (302). Soon, he finds a cat, an exact copy of Pluto, that loves the hero of the story as much as Pluto did. Was this cat sent to the main character as a second chance to start all over again? The only thing that is different about the new cat from Pluto is “a large, although indefinite splotch of white, covering nearly the whole region of the breast” (302).
Nevertheless, the main character fails in this chance. He commits a much more terrible sin than the killing of a pet; he murders a human: his wife. Shortly before this murder, the white spot on the cat's chest that originally was very indefinite “[as и т.д.................

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