Symbolism in Poe’s Works Essay

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Many authors often use symbolism to express a deeper meaning. They use the symbols to connect an unrelated thought or feeling into their literary work they are writing. Edgar Allan Poe frequently uses this literary device in his works. Symbols are many times seen in his poems and in his short stories. Many symbols are evident in Poe’s works “The Raven,” “The Tell-Tale Heart,” and “The Black Cat.” Because Poe’s works are typically dark, his use of symbols is in a dark way. Although there are many types of symbols manifested in these stories, Poe’s works generally include a symbol that eludes death or the end of something and many include references of sight and vision. Edgar Allan Poe uses many different symbols of death or the end in his…show more content…
A prophet is a proclaimer of God’s will, sees what is coming before those who he proclaims it to, representing sight, while the raven is dark and mysterious being a symbol of death (“The Raven” 286). Other uses of symbolism in the poem include Poe’s reference of the goddess Pallas and use of archaic words symbolizing the past and how the narrator is stuck in the past (Silverman 240). The narrator is trapped in a time where he believes he will be with Lenore again. The raven being perched on the bust of the goddess Pallas is also a symbol of the narrator’s belief that the raven is speaking a truthful and wise answer, for the Pallas is the goddess of wisdom, even though the raven cannot have thought provoked answers (Hallqvist). In the short story, “The Tell-Tale Heart,” Edgar Allan Poe uses many varying symbols, symbols that represent more than one feeling or idea. The old man’s eyes in the story are symbolic of a few things. The eyes are symbolic of how old man had a distorted view of the world which could possibly be why the narrator felt he had to kill the old man. The narrator calls the eye the “vulture eye” symbolic of the narrator’s feeling that because of the eye the man is evil (“The Tell-Tale Heart”). Kenneth Silverman says, “... eyes in Poe’s works arouse the dread of being consumed” (207). This is similar to how the narrator felt that the old man’s eye was controlling and took over its surroundings. Poe also portrays a blindness symbolized
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