A Grotesque Deception (F-Block)

Poe

Although we’ve already explored The Masque of the Red Death, A Dream Within a Dream, and The Raven, Edgar Allan Poe’s work contains many more hidden recesses and dark depths. Moreover, Poe’s writings are often thought of as manifestations of his personal life, which point to mindset of strange and somber qualities.

If you are a member of the F-Block Creative Writing squad, click the link and prepare to investigate more of Poe’s life and work!

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THE TASK: First, you are going to read Jess Nevins’ Reality as Grotesque Deception (click here to access the article). Upon finishing the article, find and read another poem or short story by Edgar Allan Poe. To access these works, feel free to visit Poe Stories, a comprehensive website dedicated to the writer. Once you’ve done this, respond to the following prompts by using the “Leave a Reply” feature at the bottom of the page. For full credit, your responses must consist of complete sentences and demonstrate active engagement.

PROMPTS
A) In what way(s) does Nevins’ article reinforce some of the mythology surrounding Poe’s life/work? In what way(s) does the article argue against some of the popular sentiments regarding the writer?

B) According to Nevins’ article, how did Poe feel about material reality? What do you think of this notion? (Hint: look at the first paragraph on the second page’s right column.)

C) What additional poem/short story did you read? What is a passage/line/quotation that you found especially intriguing? Why?

D) Having now fully engaged with Poe’s life and work, what do you think of the writer?

22 thoughts on “A Grotesque Deception (F-Block)

  1. A) Nevin’s article reinforces some of the mysteries that surrounded Poe’s life as it says that he spent most of his time writing to make money, not for fun. But it also debunks the common myth that he was a drunkered and a drug addict.

    B) Poe felt that Material Reality was extremely important when it came to horror fiction. He also felt that Humans couldn’t feel what material reality was, and that fiction was the only way to express it.

    C) I read “The Valley of Unrest”and I just love the lines “Perennial tears descend in gems.” That one line has so much symbolize in it, it’s just amazing. It can represent how wars will always be fought, or how death is inevitable and trying to escape it is futile, and so much more. It’s such a good line.

    D) Personally, I think Poe is a great writer. I didn’t really like him at first, but now that I’ve read so much of his works, I can safely say he is one of my favorite poets.

  2. A) Nevins’ article tells how Poe did not write about the typical things associated with horror, like monsters or ghosts. While his work was fiction, it focused on other kinds of terror. He had a small range of interest that he wrote about, which is why many of his poems and short stories have such similar plots and characters. People think that Poe was the creator and idol of the horror genre, but Nevins contradicts that. Nevins says how he was not successful right from the start and was in fact not the first person to start writing horror.

    B) Poe thought material reality was something humans could not comprehend. It was a part of imagination that came from their emotions being distorted by his work. Poe’s stories had a psychological impact on people.

    C) I read “Spirits of the Dead” by Poe. The passage I found most intriguing was:

    “Now are thoughts thou shalt not banish —
    Now are visions ne’er to vanish —
    From thy spirit shall they pass
    No more — like dew-drop from the grass:”
    I thought this line was interesting because it’s kind of creepy in the sense that it tells you that things like your visions and thoughts will never leave you.

    D) Overall, I think Poe is a very skilled writer. I admire the way he goes about writing and making the reader feel genuine fear. I think he is very talented at what he does.

  3. A) Nevin’s article reinforces the fact that Poe was a master of horror fiction. However, he argues the fact that Poe was the FIRST horror fiction writer. In fact, Poe had almost a century of horror fiction writers before him specifically in Britain. In addition, Nevin emphasizes that Poe had a determination for respect. He argues Poe’s reputation as solely a drunk and a drug addict because he was respected as a critic in this day in age. Despite this fact, he was not seen in nearly as great of light during his time as he is now.

    B) Poe does not believe that humans will ever be able to grasp the concept of material reality. This is due to our “physical limitations.” Poe’s imagination was so obscure that it effected the minds of his readers. This happened primarily due to the lack of imagination and intuition of society. I think that this notion is quite interesting. I think that Poe had a different kind of mind than most people of his time, and his writings made horror more of a psychological reality to people.

    C) I read “Alone:” as an additional poem for Poe. I found two lines particularly interesting. The first was the first line of the poem that stated, ” From childhood’s hour I have not been as others were” and the second was “And all I lov’d — I lov’d alone”. I liked these two lines because I found them to be very revealing about Poe’s life. In almost all of his works it is evident that Poe has an odd imagination and view on life and this poem gives an insight on why he is like this. It is evident now that Poe’s childhood of sorrow and being lonely impacted his writing style.

    D) I find Poe to be a fascinating figure. As most of his works have disturbing story lines, I always wondered as to why. However, now I know that it was because of his life filled with loneliness. I have a greater respect towards Poe because he took this negative aspect of his life and made it a motivating force for his writing. I think it is a shame that Poe was not fully recognized until after his death because he never got to experience the respect that he had always desired.

  4. A) Nevins’ article reveals how Poe had a hard life at home, and how that was what influenced a lot of his writings. His wife was ill, and he still had to support his family on his stories. Poe would go far and wide in his stories to get success; he would sometimes come out of his shell and write things he usually doesn’t write to reach out to readers that before were not interested in his writings.
    B) Poe didn’t think humans and material reality went together too well. He believed that it was something that humans could not bring to a full understanding. Humans would have to accept that their lives limit them; limiting their imagination. If you didn’t have limits in your life, such as time and space, you would probably do what you have always dreamed in doing. Poe had to accept the fact that humans are sometimes too scared, nervous, or afraid of doing something out of the box, or above their limit.
    C) I read the poem “Eldorado” by Poe. In this poem, each line contributed to the whole scene, and each line was interesting. However, there was one line that stood out to me: “And, at his strength Failed him at length”. This line had a lot of power to it, and was probably one of the largest contributors to the poem. In context of the poem, this line is describing how the person could not find Eldorado, and he was finally giving up. Out of context, this line could help you understand that you have to persevere through all the bad to receive the good.
    D) I enjoy reading Poe’s work, and I understand it more. I usually cannot comprehend what he is trying to get at in his poems, but I found a way to understand it all. I like Poe’s short stories better than his poems, since the stories have more to them. Despite the fact that Poe’s poems have a lot of strength and movement, his stories have more to them, to me at least.

  5. A) This article shows how Poe’s life really was hard because he was not respected as a writer and he struggled to support his family. This cold have been a source of inspiration for him. The article points out how he turned to drinking to help with the stress. He had a reputation of being a drunk and this reinforces this. It argues against the tale that Poe invented the horror because he did not. He was not the first and he didn’t use scary monsters to freak people out, he used their own minds. The article stresses that he was not the first horror writer.
    B) According to the article, Poe thought that humans were unable to fully understand material reality. What humans see is actually a deception of the mind and basically you can mess with people by poking this with a stick. It is up to the imagination to process the information the way it wants to. I agree with this. If you put someone in a dark room they will get scared, even if there is nothing in the room because when your imagination takes over, anything can happen.
    C) I read “A Valentine” (1850). This poem was a riddle saying that this poem was about a woman and that her name is hidden in it somewhere. I liked the line
    “…Do not forget
    The trivialest point, or you may lose your labor!” This line is awesome because it is about trying to find the woman’s name in the poem, but you can translate it to real life. You have to pay attention to the little things and not focus on just the big picture because you’ll screw up.
    D) I think Edgar Allen Poe is a genius. He seems a little bit insane and that makes him brilliant. He’s also kind of sassy and he would put jokes in his poems as a prank on readers. He struggled so much in his life and never got to see how respected his work is. It’s sad, but it is also good to know that he never had fame go to his head. He never got the chance for his work to go downhill. He is a brilliant writer and an amazing person.

  6. A) In what way(s) does Nevins’ article reinforce some of the mythology surrounding Poe’s life/work?
    -He agrees that Poe was the first to write his specific type of horror story. Also that Poe was very interested in the supernatural and psychology. Poe believed that the supernatural parts of his stories should be just implied so that they could be easily taken as metaphors or as literal.
    **In what way(s) does the article argue against some of the popular sentiments regarding the writer?
    -He says that Poe didn’t invent horror. He says that Poe was addicted to drugs/alcohol and that he wrote for money, not for art. Poe wasn’t famous when he was alive. He was a respected literary critic, but wasn’t well known for his actual writing.
    B) According to Nevins’ article, how did Poe feel about material reality?
    -Poe believed that what we see is a crude and incorrect version of reality distorted by our emotions and the flaws in our minds. He said that there is a whole world we can’t see all around us that can only be reached by acts of absurd imagination.
    **What do you think of this notion?
    -I think that it’s partially true and partially false. I believe that it’s very true that our brains alter things so that they will make more sense or so that they can be better understood. However, I don’t know how much this really happens. It’s impossible that we see things exactly how they truly are, but are the things we can’t understand really as insane and awesome as Poe believed?
    C) What additional poem/short story did you read?
    -The website wasn’t working for me, but I found another place to re-read The Cask of Amontillado.
    **What is a passage/line/quotation that you found especially intriguing? Why?
    -“But now there came from out the niche a low laugh that erected the hairs upon my head.” The fact that the guy he’s basically burying alive thinks he’s kidding and the narrator will soon let him out and say it was all a joke is so horrifying. It also makes my skin crawl the way he refers to the man as his friend the entire time and seems to have no remorse as he puts the last brick into place.
    D) Having now fully engaged with Poe’s life and work, what do you think of the writer?
    -Every time I learn more about Poe as a person I change my mind about whether or not I like him. Their is no doubt that I think his work is incredible, but I don’t like the fact that he wrote purely to get money. I believe one should create art because they feel they can’t live if they don’t, not for a pay-off. On the other hand, I love the way Poe mixes psychology into his literature (because I love psychology). I also like his crazy ideas about our minds tricking us and such things. Basically, I don’t know what I think of him. I think I’d have to meet him to decide.

  7. A) The article does reinforce Poe’s addiction to popularity and his desire to be liked and respected as a writer. The most common myth about Poe is that he was an alcoholic and a drug addict. It is also that he let his addictions come through in his writing and take over. This article debunks these ideas. Although he was an alcoholic and a drug addict, they were the background to his career. His main focus was to be recognized for his writing.

    B) Poe used material reality to make his horror stories feel more real. It is a device that makes the fiction seem more real, though it is subconscious. This means, that he would write things that would get under your skin and you would not realize it. I do not believe material reality is even real. I do not understand how he uses it or exactly what it is but I think it is probably just his ability to string words together to make them scarier.

    C) I read the poem “Spirits Of The Dead”. The passage that stood out to me was, “Into thine hour of secrecy:
    Which is not loneliness– for then
    the spirits of the dead who stood”

    It is talking about how you should not be lonely when you are alone, but rather enjoy it. You are in the presence of the spirits of people who have died. That time of silence and solitude is a blessing and should not be taken advantage of.

    D) I think Poe’s writing is so influential to the development of modern horror that
    I really like it. I think his stories are incredible and his poetry is some of the best I have ever read. I love the mystery in his poems and how they are open to interpretation. The poem I read was so dark but when you looked into it it was really a beautiful poem. You have to dig deeper into his work to understand it and I think that makes it a lot more dynamic.

  8. A) Nevins’ article explains that Poe did not invent horror fiction, although he was horror’s first master, he did not start the genre. He brought unusual aspects to horror writing that many writers and publishers maybe didn’t agree with, or thought would not be popular. Little did they know, Poe would become one of the most highly praised writer still today. People believed their own things of how Poe was. Nevin tells that views of his reputation being a drunk and drug addict was inaccurate.

    B) Poe felt that “material reality was something that humans could not completely comprehend.” He believed that we were physically limited from seeing things further than our imagination in physical reality. Poe had the ability to put distorted emotions and warped psychologies into words of his writing. Before horror fiction was popular, not everyone used their imagination in this more twisted way, that’s why he wasn’t very popular yet.

    C) I read Poe’s poem titled “Alone”. The most intriguing lines were “My heart to joy at the same tone– And all I lov’d — I lov’d alone”. I found these lines most interesting because they tell what Poe was feeling, why he felt alone. Being alone meant his heart and joy for loving anything was the same because he did not share this love with anyone, he loved alone.

    D) I believe Edgar Allen Poe was one of the greatest writers. He brought new things to the world of writing. In the beginning, he was not a respected writer by others, only a critic. It’s a shame that he did not get a chance to live and see the impact he had once horror fiction became popular. He took horror to a new level, not just being scary but getting inside your head. The physiological effect each of his writings had on it’s readers is something to respect about him, even if he was a little insane.

  9. A) Nevin’s article reinforces the idea that Poe did essentially create his own type of horror stories, which were a step ahead of his time, however she also stresses the fact that he did not invent the horror story. Many horror – fiction writers came before Poe and were influential to his work. Nevin argues against the popular sentiment of Poe’s fame and popularity during his lifetime. Although he was well – respected for his criticism, he was not honored for much of his fictional work until years after his death, when his personal style began to rise in popularity.

    B) Poe’s interpretation of material reality was that it is an idea that is not fully understandable to humans, due to limitations of time and space. Emotions and thought can have a great impact on how humans view reality, and much of what is believed to be physical reality is actually just imagined by each individual.

    C) I read Poe’s poem “Alone.” The passage I found most intriguing is the final few lines of the poem,
    “From the thunder, and the storm —
    And the cloud that took the form
    (When the rest of Heaven was blue)
    Of a demon in my view –”
    I thought this particular passage was interesting because throughout the poem he describes how as a child he could never view things as everyone else seemed to, and everything he enjoyed, he seemed to enjoy by himself. These final lines describe differing perspectives of the same thing, because what others may be comparing to Heaven, Poe is comparing to Hell.

    D) I think Poe had an interesting and unique grip on reality. He may have suffered from what modern doctors may deem some sort of mental illness. The misfortunes of his life took a toll on his mindset, making his work dark and suspenseful.

  10. A) The article is generally criticizing the writing styles of Poe. Poe wrote stories and other sources of literature for the sure purpose to make money. Poe did not form his own writing style with horror stories but only reinforced it and refined it. Poe was also eager to improve his reputation as a writer and that’s what he did.

    B) Poe enjoyed using Material Reality in order to make his stories more real and also forging the way the mind works in his works. Poe wanted to stretch the sense of reality and make it more appealing to his audience. He used a great sense of emotion throughout his works that influenced his reputation. I feel as though if it makes the story more interesting then its worth putting in.

    C) I read “Alone” the poem, My heart to joy at the same tone —
    And all I lov’d — I lov’d alone — This is an interesting passage because it is showing that Poe is alone and is morning for help and can give a perspective on his life.

    D) I think that Edgar Allen is interesting because of the way he brings a sense of reality into his works.

    =D

  11. A) The article talks about some of the ways in which Poe redefined the Horror genre at the time. At the time, Horror stories were poorly written and not terribly complex. Poe’s complex literary use became a staple of horror writing for those who came after him. Also, he put more emphasis on the psychological aspect of horror, instead of just being bloody or gruesome.
    B) Poe felt that “Material Reality” was something that people could not comprehend fully due to physical and mental restrictions. In fact I don’t really comprehend what “Material Reality” even is. The article really should have explained that better… Actually, scratch that. I understand it now once I heard someone else explain it (no thanks to the article.) Poe believed that there was no definite visual interpretation to any story because everyone saw things different due to things like imagination and mental state. I completely agree with this. One major advantage that horror writing has over things like Scary movies, or television shows is that with visual references there’s a predetermined amount of fear for each person. With writing, it’s as scary as your mind can make it.
    C) I read “the telltale heart.” My favorite passage from it is: “I kept quite still and said nothing. For a whole hour I did not move a muscle,” Just because it does a great job of subtly telling you that he’s insane. Despite what he says he didn’t actually stand there for an hour, the fact that he thought he did tells you that something is not quite right with him.
    D) What I really like about Poe is that he’s good at writing from the perspective of a crazy person. Writing an insane individual into a story isn’t hard, but writing from their perspective is really hard unless you’re crazy yourself. Which Poe might have been, it would explain why he’ so good at it.

  12. A.) Well it seems like at first that the writer of the article Jess Nevins was undermining Edgar Allen Poe and his work. Saying that he wasn’t the first horror fiction writer or psychological horror writer. But at the end she said he was “Not bad for someone whose lingering (and inaccurate) reputation is someone of a drunkard and drug addict.”

    B.) “…material writing was not something that humans could not completely comprehend.” Basically saying Poe believed that we weren’t able to understand material writing. The author believes that there is no material world because everyone understands things differently. I completely agree with Poe’s idea that everyone has a different “perfect world”.

    C.) I read The Tell Tale Heart, the entire story was both intriguing yet horrifying. Throughout the beginning of the story the man was stalking the older man. Going into his bedroom at night, feeling sympathy yet laughing. How terrifying is that? He said that he felt sympathy for the man yet he was laughing at heart at the fact that he was contemplating killing the man. The whole murder occurred because the man did not like the eye, how terrifying. This man was completely going insane at one characteristic of that nice old man. After he suffocated the old man under a pillow he hid him underneath the floor board. When an officer came to the house one day the man felt guilt, a huge amount of guilt. The guilt rose to his brain and he thought he could hear the old mans heart underneath the floor boards. The heart beat increased louder and louder and the police officer heard nothing at all. The man grew scared as he thought the officer could hear the heart beat. He heard the heart so much that he yelled ” “Villains!” I shrieked, “dissemble no more! I admit the deed! –tear up the planks! –here, here! –it is the beating of his hideous heart!”

    D.) I absolutely adore Edgar Allen Poe as a writer. His work is unmatched in the fact of horror. Him as a person is a different story, he was a drunk and a drug addict and had an extremely hard life so I am unsure of how I feel about him as a person. But his writing wow, he has to be one of the best writers I have ever read.

  13. A. Nevin’s article reinforces the idea that he was troubled–even depressed–during his lifetime and that it definitely affected his writing. The myths that Nevin argued against we’re that he was a drug addict and that Poe wrote his stories seriously. Most of his stories were to make money. Nevin also argued that Poe wasn’t appreciated until his generation died, although he was somewhat popular in France.

    B. Poe believed that the real world could not be understood because the limitations of time and space were unknown. What he basically thought was that nothing is real, but everything is real at the same time. It’s impossible to tell because you are part of the everything that can be real or fake. I agree with him, personally. We don’t know the physical limitations of anything and yet we feel like me know them. The more we know, the more we realise we don’t know.

    C. I read The System of Dr. Tarr and Prof. Fether. I found this passage intriguing because it questions who’s opinion is real.
    “Monsieur Maillard, it appeared, in giving me the account of the lunatic who had excited his fellows to rebellion, had been merely relating his own exploits. This gentleman had, indeed, some two or three years before, been the superintendent of the establishment, but grew crazy himself, and so became a patient. This fact was unknown to the travelling companion who introduced me. The keepers, ten in number, having been suddenly overpowered, were first well tarred, then — carefully feathered, and then shut up in underground cells. They had been so imprisoned for more than a month, during which period Monsieur Maillard had generously allowed them not only the tar and feathers (which constituted his “system”), but some bread and abundance of water. The latter was pumped on them daily. At length, one escaping through a sewer, gave freedom to all the rest.”

    D. I think what I have always thought of about Poe. He was a great writer who had a very original point of view on life and the world. His ideas on the what is real and what makes a good horror story are the basis of modern horror. We couldn’t have evolved our horror fiction to what it is now without him.

  14. A.) In Nevins’ article he discusses many of the myths revolving Poe’s career and personal life. One of the first things he talks about is his struggle at becoming a popular writer. Poe struggled to make a living and support his wife because he was one of the few American writers who tried to make his living solely on writing. Although Poe got put down multiple times, which Nevins talked about,he never gave up. He addresses that the reason Poe was very unpopular in his time period was because he often insulted or poked fun at contemporary supernatural fiction. This gave him a bad reputation to other writers, because in the end he was not likable. Nevins also addressed how he in fact was a pretty heavy drinker but not necessarily a drunk. He tended to overindulge in alcohol to try to escape his stressful life and struggles of having a wife with tuberculosis. It was his criticizing attitude and peculiar personal life that played against him in becoming a respected writer. Although Nevins brings up his myths of being a bit weird, drunk, and not a good writer he provides answers as to why people had these feelings towards him.

    B.) Poe felt that no one really was able to understand what material reality was because of the limits there are in life with time and space. He believed that what people saw as physical reality was really just their deceptions of the world created based on their past emotions and psychologies. He knew that there was not just one way to look at things, it all depends on who you are and how you see them. In his writing he would use this to his advantage by writing horror stories that would really get into people’s heads. I agree with Poe and that there is no right or wrong way of looking at something and it all depends on who you are as a person. Everyone has different perspectives on things and that is okay.

    C.) I read the poem ” For Annie” by Poe. My favorite line was ” But my heart it is brighter Than all of the many Stars in the sky, For it sparkles with Annie –It glows with the light” I find it very sweet and kind even though it is talking about death it is also talking about love. Poe finds a way of talking about two contrasting incidents, love and death, and in turn sound beautiful. This line also shows how much he did love Annie and if I were Annie I would feel pretty special after reading this poem.

    D.) After learning about Poe I think he is very interesting. He seems to be unique and have some pretty good outlooks on life. He was smart and had some good ideas just his opinions might have been taken the wrong way, leading to his unpopularity as a writer. He went through some struggles but in the end wrote some amazing poems that are fun to read.

  15. A) In Nevins’ article, he reinforces that Poe was drinking at the time of his writing. A common myth about Edgar Allan Poe is that he was under the influence of opium and alcohol during his times of writing. In the article written by Nevins he says, “As much as he could, Poe wrote stories following these rules. Whether or not the stories would sell continued to be important to him; he had a wife to support, and her tuberculosis, and his increased drinking because of it, meant their lives had less stability and greater bills.” This passage from the article shows how Nevins agrees with the common myth about Poe. Also in this article, Nevins argues about Poe being a supposedly nasty critic. A common myth about Edgar Allan Poe is that he was a nasty critic. In the article, Jess Nevins states, “In his life time he was a respected critic.” This shows how Nevins disagrees with the common myth of Poe being a nasty critic.

    B) According to the article, Poe felt that “material reality was something that humans could not completely comprehend” and that our limits we have for ourselves and even time constraints prevent us from having an understanding of material reality. We can only imagine a material reality and because of different emotions and views on life, everyone had a different thought of material reality. I agree with Poe. Because everyone has different views and different ideal worlds, there can be no such thing as a material reality that is fully comprehended by every human.

    C) I read For Annie. A quote that I found intriguing was, “And the fever called “Living”, Is conquered at last.” I thought this was an interesting way for speaker to say that he was dying. The poem over all is great because he is saying how, even though his is dead, his love for Annie is still alive because of her.

    D) I think Poe is a good writer. The way he explains death is very interesting. He does not just say, “and then he died.” Instead, he uses different techniques to show and explain that the person in the story, poem, etc. died but without saying up front that he died.

  16. A) In Jess Nevins’ article, Reality as Grotesque Deception, there is reinforcement of the mythology that surrounded Edgar Allan Poe’s life and work. The article explains how during the 18th and 19th century, there were many horror writers and supernatural creatures were often used in their writing. Poe, as a writer, was influenced by this and decided to include some of these techniques into his writing. The article argues against some of the popular sentiments regarding Poe in pointing out that many people took his writings seriously when they were only supposed to be parodies.

    B) According to the article, Poe thought of material reality as something that people could not fully understand. There is so much to life and reality that we tend to live in worlds of our own. I think that Poe’s opinion is true in some ways and wrong in other ways. Even though we do all have a reality of our own, similar life experiences are shared among us which can give us all an outlook on life that is almost the same.

    C) I read Alone, by Edgar Allan Poe. A quotation that I find especially intriguing is “I have not seen as others saw.” I think this quotation is interesting because it is basically saying that this person is alone, abandoned by others, and has not yet experienced all that others have experienced.

    D) Having been now fully engaged in Poe’s life and work, I think he was someone who was very dedicated to his work and earning money. I also think that writing was a break from life for him and that it helped him in a time when he was in poverty.

  17. A) Nevins’ article reinforces some of the mythology surrounding Poe’s life/work because he talks about how Poe was criticized throughout his life about his work. Lots of people thought Poe was just a drunk writing poems to get money and didn’t have any real passion for writing, and Nevins supports this. The article argues against some of the popular sentiments regarding the writer by saying that he didn’t, in fact, invent horror fiction. Nevins does acknowledge the fact that without Poe horror fiction wouldn’t be the same, but adequately responds to the myth that he invented it himself. He has a powerful argument against this myth and displays his information accurately and in a simple manner.

    B) According to Nevins’ article, Poe felt that there really was no specific material reality. Everyone sees the world in their own way, and there isn’t one specific way to look at the world as a whole or individual parts of the world. Material reality stresses the ideal situation. But doesn’t everyone have different opinions? Doesn’t everyone have different likes and dislikes? To one person, the perfect world could include the exact OPPOSITE of what another persons in THEIR perfect world is. And I have to agree with Poe on this one. I certainly wouldn’t want the same world as Hitler or Stalin had envisioned theirs. Of course the world isn’t perfect, but everyone has their own fantasies about how things would change if it were them on a throne with a crown and scepter controlling Earth.

    C) The additional poem that I read was Annabel Lee. One part that I found particularly intriguing was the part that says “She was a child and I was a child in this kingdom by the sea, but we loved with a love that was more than love – I and my Annabel Lee.” I think that to be able to say you love someone even more than love itself is a pretty powerful thing. Even though they were young, they still had this powerful connection that nobody could ever break. I think that if you’re in love, you’re going to know it. It’s the way you catch yourself looking at them, picking up their small habits, laughing at things they do that aren’t even that funny, and doing something without them and wishing they could be there to experience it with you. I think that to love with a love that is more than a love is to feel something so powerful you can barely find the words to say it, but you have to find words anyway.

    D) I’ve loved Poe since the first moment I was introduced to him.The book of everything he’s ever written sits neatly on the bookshelf by my bed. And although this article was a little straying, I still love his work. Maybe he had some problems and maybe he was a bit of a weirdo, but that doesn’t make him any less talented. He’s one of the best writers this world has ever seen, and it’s amazing how intriguing he can be. His stories make you think and his poems catch you by surprise. He makes you feel something, and I think that’s one of the best (if not THE best) things a writer can do.

  18. A.) Nevins’ article opposes the popular idea that Poe created or invented the style of horror fiction writing. He suggests that Poe did in fact, help with the genre’s rise in popularity dramatically, however, he was not the one to create it in the first place. The narrator is shown giving how Poe thinks his writing should be when he says: “Less sweepingly, dream endings were contemptible; what supernaturalism there was should be real and meaningful to the story; verisimilitude was crucial and must be built up through minor background detail, but the supernatural should be kept ambiguous and vague; the narrator’s reaction to the supernatural should be surprise, shock, awe, and finally acceptance.”

    B.) Poe believes that “Material Reality’ is something that humans cannot truly ever comprehend for themselves. Their imagination is the only thing allowing them to even have an idea of anything that stretches past their physical limitations. This notion to Poe effects his writing and gives it more of a vague and psychological feel. I partially agree with this mindset, seeing as we don’t actually know for sure what’s out there. I think that we have an idea of material reality, but only in the space that our limitations allow.

    C.) The other work I read by Poe was a poem he wrote called “Dream Land”. The quote I came to find most intriguing was the fourth stanza, which says: “Where dwell the ghouls–By each spot the most unholy — In each nook most melancholy, — There the traveller meets aghast Sheeted memories of the past, — Shrouded forms that start and sigh As the pass the wanderer by — white-robed forms of friends long given, In agony, to Earth –and Heaven.” I found it most intriguing because the way that Poe describes a dreamworld is more melancholy, full of sadness and despair versus being happy. He says that dreams are only full of your memories haunting you, of people that you’ve missed but know you can never see again. It certainly puts things into a different perspective.

    D.) I think that Poe is a genius when it comes to his work. He isn’t exactly a 100
    % conventional writer, but the feeling and the mood that his poems and short stories give off is captivating, and I think anyone would agree. Even if sometimes, the words on the page don’t make the most sense, given how vague he tends to be, the way he presents the story keeps the reader interested. In the mask of Red Death, it was difficult to realize what exactly the masked figure was, but the way the scenery was described, and the spectacle giving a feeling of sudden unease and silence in an overcrowded room gives the reader themselves a feeling of unease and discomfort, and I think that if you can do that as a writer with such ease, then you’re doing a pretty good job.

  19. 1) Well it states that he had almost a century’s worth of pre existing works of horror to develop his unique style of writing. Poe used mythology in his work very often as it is a prominent factor of gothic/horror poetry. The article really reflects the view that he held and in turn reveals how it could serve as motivation behind such mythology. I honestly have no clue what the second part of the question is asking nor do I know how to answer it… Sorry ’bout that.

    2) According to Poe, material reality was merely the distorted view of the world that was held in different light by every individual. I think Poe felt that there is no physicality, only deceptive imagination which “obscures” actual psychology. To me, he felt that everything is different because everybody sees things differently. Also that everything we think we know is just a psychological deception, because nothing is really factual due to the notion of individual prerogative. I tend to agree with Poe in the sense that nothing material can be defined realistically/practically because “reality” is based entirely on perception, which is often “distorted” by variously warped psychologies.

    3) I read Annabel Lee. “Of many far wiser than we- And neither the angels in Heaven above, Nor the demons down under the sea, Can ever dissever my soul from the soul Of the beautiful Annabel Lee” I was intrigued by this quote/line because it is deep on a few different levels. He is saying that not even the benevolence of an angel nor the malevolence of a demon is strong enough to separate him and Annabel Lee. It’s ambiguous as well in a sense that he could be alluding to the notion that even when death does them part their souls will be together. Also that even if one goes to Hell and the other to Heaven they will still be bonded by their souls… The ambiguity of this is what intrigues me most.

    4)*I don’t know whether the “writer” is Poe or Nevins but I’m going to go ahead and do Poe*
    I think that Poe was an excellent writer and his potential insanity/ignorance from reality served as the ink in his quill, if you will. Having such mental distortions must have been a huge advantage as it gave him a wide range of prerogatives to write from, almost like Schizophrenia in a sense that he saw things from different perspective every time he viewed them. I also think that his brilliance is often mistaken for insanity and vice-versa based off the fact that he was both a brilliant poet and a mentally unstable thinker/person.

  20. A.) Nevins’ confirmed the myth that Poe was a drug and alcohol abuser. However, he does explain why Poe drank so much; his wife had Tuberculosis so he began drinking more to cope with the stress of higher bills and having less money. Nevins also argues against the myth that Poe was the inventor of Horror Fiction. “Poe didn’t invent horror fiction, but without him it would’ve taken much longer to bloom..”

    B.) Poe didn’t believe that material reality was not a thing. He said that since all people didn’t see things the same way that everyone’s material reality is different. I totally agree with Poe. He also says that time and space don’t allow material reality to exist and that material reality is one of those things that is “often obscured by the distortions of emotions…”

    C.) I read Poe’s poem “Alone”. The line that says, “My sorrow — I could not awaken. My heart to joy at the same tone ” struck me as the most intriguing line. I find it intriguing and sad in a way. He’s saying that he can’t escape from all his sadness and that his sadness and his joy are the same feeling to him now.

    D.) Honesty, I’m not a big fan of Poe. He is a good writer, I just don’t like the genre of Horror Fiction. His writing definitely makes you think and evokes lots of emotion. but his genre doesn’t do anything for me.

  21. A. The author reinforces some of the mythology of Edgar Allen Poe. He says that Poe was an alcoholic, just as people say. He also did create the modern psychological horror story. He also disproves some popular sentiments about Poe, such as that he created horror, which he didn’t, and that he was addicted to opium, which he wasn’t.
    B. Poe thought that the idea of material reality is something that humans cannot comprehend, and that what we think is material reality is really a grotesque deception, because emotion and feelings always cloud how people see the world. This makes sense, because people do have feelings about everything, that influences how people see things, making it impossible to see material reality.
    C. A short story that I read is “The Fall of the House of Usher”. An interesting line in it is,”There was an iciness, a sinking, a sickening of the heart –an unredeemed dreariness of thought which no goading of the imagination could torture into aught of the sublime. What was it –I paused to think –what was it that so unnerved me in the contemplation of the House of Usher?”. I think this is a good line because it describes well exactly how he feels as he looks at the house, how it makes his heart beat and he feels cold. The house Is so creepy and menacing that he prefers to not even think about it, however he still must approach to see his friend.
    D. I think that Poe was a very good writer. He created the modern psychological horror story. His great choices of words make his stories very creepy without needing any very supernatural creatures. The eeriness of his work is also similar to the Twilight Zone, and was likely an inspiration for it.

  22. ) 1.The horror writers were influenced by the Gothic novels which added overt supernaturalism During the late 18th and the early 19th century. So the writers started to add supernatural creatures into the novels. By the time Poe began his horror stories.
    Also he was more willing to sell his book instead of adding his thoughts so that he published plenty of horror stories.
    2. Although writers and critics responded his work with scorn and considered in bad taste, he won popularity between readers and critics and great reputation after his death.
    B) 1. Poe thought material reality which was something humans could not completely comprehend.due to our physical limitation and the limitations of time and space.
    2.Material reality is something which reflect writer’s perspective to the world by their experience and value. Through this nation, we are easier able to see the writer’s inner world and deep thought. But the problem of this topics is confused for comprehend.
    C)Spirits of the Dead
    “the soul shall find itself alone” is true. Many times we believed we found a soulmate. Whatever the person knows you very well, but you still have some feeling which is hard to tell. You still have different opinion on something. No one is 100 percent understanding you. So our soul is belong to alone. Our journey should be finished by ourselves. But the memories still gild our special and different journey. We are alone but not lonely.
    D)His deepest soul is rebel. This personality contributed him to create critical and deep thinking work about soul. So he did not choose to follow the crowd. Although he lived a poor life, his wife always there strengthened him. I think he had a lonely soul because people couldn’t understand and accept his ideas and works. Maybe this is one of the reason stressed him and led him die. Even more his works are consist of detachment.

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