Importance of Point of View in "The Black Cat" by Egar Allen Poe

Topics: Narrative, First-person narrative, Narrative mode Pages: 4 (1353 words) Published: October 8, 1999
The Importance of Point of View in The Black Cat

Point of view is a very important aspect of The Black Cat. The main character tells the story to the reader from his first person point of view. You have a good feel for the story because you have the first person narration. As you read into the story it comes apparent however that the narrator telling the story is not a reliable interpretation of the details around him. You have a good feel for his emotions and the events of the story, but the narrators opinions are so far out that you are forced to wonder just what of the story is the askew interpretation of a madman and what is the reality of the situation. The first person narration of the story plays an integral part in the reader's level of understanding of the main character's madness, as well as the unfolding of plot of the story.

The story revolves around a man and his cat that loves him very devoutly. At the start of the story he is very fond of his loving companion the cat, Pluto. The cat's love for his master eventually becomes Pluto's demise. The cat would follow its master's every move. If the narrator moved the cat was at his feet, if he sat Pluto would clamor to his lap. This after a while began to enrage the narrator. He soon found himself becoming very irritable towards Pluto and his other pets. One night he came home "much intoxicated" and he grabbed Pluto. Pluto bit his hand and this sent him into a rage. "The fury of a demon instantly possessed me. I knew myself no longer. My original soul seemed, at once, to take its flight from my body; and a more than fiendish malevolence, gin-nurtured, thrilled every fibre of my frame"(Poe 103). At this point he seems to have lost it. This description is not that of someone of sane mindset. His soul taking flight from his body appears to be symbolic for the loss of his rational thought. The fury of a demon gives you the imagery of something not human. Poe takes every...
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