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Criticism of Poe Essays

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Though Edgar Allen Poe is most famous for his short mystery stories of the macabre and poetry, he is also known as one of the foremost figures in literary criticism. Poe alienated many of his colleagues due to the unyielding standards he demanded in the building of a worthy national literature, he is now credited for being one of the most influential figures in the advancement of literary traditions not only in America but in Europe as well, leaving an indubitable mark on the world of literature.
Though Poe's poems draw in the reader, at times reluctantly, on a subconscious level, there is widespread disagreement on the virtues of Poe's poetry. Many critics connect the tragic origins of Poe's life with events described in his poetry;
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Each verse of the poem ends with a recurring chorus of “nothing more”, assessed by the narrator that there are reasonable explanations for the strange happenings of the evening, and progresses to the repetitive and increasingly menacing response of “Nevermore!” from the otherwise silent bird. The powerfulness of emotion rises with each chorus, ending in the narrator's own admission that “nevermore” can he be free of the grief and sorrow brought by the night's uninvited visitor. The setting of the poem, a dark, December night in a library-like room, as well as classical statuary, velvet cushions, rustling draperies, and the rapid beating of one's heart in response to fear of the unknown, are all familiar themes in Poe's fiction and poetry, as is the “anonymous young man” mourning the passing of a beautiful young woman. (Sisler, 2004)
Poe’s poems are not the only writings in which he fashions an aura of suspense and terror; this can be found in Poe’s short stories similarly, with frightening events and twists of the plot exciting the imagination. As with many of Poe’s stories, the human
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