"The Tell Tale Heart" by Edgar Allen Poe

Essay by KVossCollege, UndergraduateA+, March 2004

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The "Evil Eye"

In the story "The Tell Tale Heart" by Edgar Allen Poe, the main character who is also the narrator is faced with the fear of the old man's eye. Because of this fear the narrator takes severe actions in order to end his fear, but on the other hand this fear leads to his demise.

In the beginning of the "Tell Tale Heart" the narrator is trying to convince us that he isn't mad, but by asking us why we say he is mad and saying " I heard all things in heaven and earth. I heard many things in hell." gives me an impression that he is mad. The narrator says that the old man had never "wronged" or "insulted" him, that it wasn't the old man who bothered him, but it was his eye. The fact the narrator is repulsed by the "evil eye" of the old man is reason enough to doubt his character.

The narrator is struggling with the thought that the evil eye is watching him, therefore, he comes up with the plan of killing the old man to get rid of the "evil eye". The story proceeds with the actions of the narrator; he describes his clever ways in which he plans to kill the old man. The narrator stalks the old man a week before he kills him, and tells us precisely how he opens the door "oh so gently." He also tells us how it took him an hour to place his hand all the way in the door. When the narrator finds the old man sleeping each night with that "evil eye"closed, I think the narrator finds peace in knowing that the evil eye isn't watching him. It isn't until the old man...