What comment does Poe seem to make about mental illness?

The story The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Poe recounts the story of a man struggling with mental illness. The main character is obsessed with an old mans ”evil eye”. He says it “haunted me day and night”, he plots to murder him making us fully aware that he cannot distinguish reality from fantasy. He is fully away of his illness and is trying to convince us of his sanity. He experiences Intense paranoia and anxiety attacks, Poe is attempting to reveal that the worst enemy of a man with mental illness is his own mental state. The main character is abel to intelligently plot and stealthily execute a murder yet waves of anxiety and begin to get in his way. He spends hours slowly entering his victims chamber when suddenly his heart beat grows faster and faster he thinks the old man is watching him and that the old mans heart beat is his own. He says “the beating grew louder” and that “anxiety seized me”, he becomes less stealthy yet is capable of executing the murder in a much more reckless fashion. “He shrieked once” and police come to investigate saying neighbors heard screams. The main character remains calm and is easily capable of convincing the police that there was no murder yet when the police are calmy laughing and enjoying a cup of tea an idea takes over the mind of the protagonist. He thinks that the police know of the murder and are simply making fun of him by being there. Because of his mental illness he cannot look at the situation objectively and he starts to crazy! The story was given the same The Tell-Tall heart because it is his heart that gives him out to the police. His heart rate represents his mental illnesses growing stronger, at the end his heart rate grew faster and his mind spiraled into a world of paranoia causing him to confess to the murder.


One thought on “What comment does Poe seem to make about mental illness?

  1. Elaborately written with details, explaining the author’s points of view in regard to mental illness. Few minor errors.

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