25 September 2014
The Black Cat Analysis
“The Black Cat,” written by Edgar Allan Poe, shows Poe’s twisted and dark ways that are portrayed throughout the story. “The Black Cat” is a story that combines many ideas that captivated Poe, especially perversity. The story shows how Poe struggles with his battle with alcohol and aggression, which ultimately lead him to destroy many things he loves. In the end, alcohol and anger are two things that Poe cannot control which lead him to madness. The symbolization of the black cat as a scapegoat may lead to speculation as to why Poe ended up committing such violent crimes. The effects of alcohol throughout the story also play an imperative role, which allows for readers to interpret Poe as being ‘insane’. The reoccurring black cat and Poe’s obsession with it represents his anger and symbolizes a scapegoat for his problems. Poe’s use of the black cat represents his anger because as the story continues, the violent crimes he is committing to the black cat intensifies. In the story, Poe’s life seems to starts off as normal as he talks about his pets and his wife in such a vibrant way. Poe began to grow “more moody” and “more irritable”, and he started to “not only neglect” his pets and Pluto, his cat, but he also “ill-used” them (Mabbott, 852). Poe is described as being intoxicated for much of the story, and saying how his disease, much like alcohol, had grown on him. Poe describes how he knew himself “no longer”, and his “original soul seemed, at once, to take its flight from” his body when his first violent act was committed. He “took from [his] waistcoat-pocked a pen-knife, opened it, grasped the poor beast by the throat, and deliberately cut one of its eyes from the socket” (Mabbott 852). He shows little to no remorse after this cutting the eyes out of his beloved cat and he actually becomes irritated by the creature, saying his “soul remained untouched” (Mabbott 851). This is...
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