The Tell Tale Heart

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The role of the narrator

The tell tale heart is a short story written by Edgar Allan Poe. As most Poe's narrator the narrator is an unreliable first person narrator. It means that the narrator is unable to relate the real facts of the story even though he attempts to convince the reader that he possesses all his senses and therefore he can tell him the '' whole story''. ''how healthily-how calmly I can tell you the whole story''. Later in the story just before the climax he says:'' And now have I not told you what you mistake for madness is but over-acuteness of the senses?''. And just after he committed the murder'' If you still think me mad you will think so no longer when I describe the wise precautions I took for the concealment of the body''.Indeed the narrator needs to prove us that he is a reliable and sane person. He tries to prove his sanity by telling a story from his past describing the steps of his deed with an accurate precision. Moreover he dissimulates his feelings with the old man so that he doesn't have an inkling about what he is up to. '' And every morning, when the day broke, I went boldly into the chamber, and spoke courageously to him, calling him by names in a hearty tone, and inquiring how he had passed the night.'' Thus if he tries to convince both the reader and the old man that he is a sane person and we are aware that he uses dissimulation with the old man, it might also suggest that the narrator uses dissimulation while telling the story. He is actually a sick man due to his oversensitivity of hearing which enables him to '' hear all things in the heaven and in the earth''. So the narrator has a blurred vision of what reality is, he is obsessed with the eye of the old man'' his eye resembled that of a vulture-a pale blue eye, with a film over it. A relevant example of the insanity of the narrator's inner thoughts are his use of short sentences,for instance''So I opened it -you cannot imagine how stealthily stealthily- until at...
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