A Tell-Tale Heart: Analysis from Question

What is the effect of writing from this perspective (first-person)?

In The Tell-Tale Heart, there is a significant effect of writing from the first person perspective. The reader interprets the story completely differently than how it would be interpreted as a third person story. Edgar Allen Poe brought this character (the narrator) to life by making the story in the first person. The reader feels like the narrator is actually speaking to him, and therefore get to feel the experience that the protagonist felt. In this story, I felt like I was a part of the narrator as he thought and planned his murder of the old man. The way he tells the story captures the reader into seeing and experiencing exactly what the narrator did. Poe writes, ” Now this is the point. You fancy me mad. Madmen know nothing. But you should have seen me. You should have seen how wisely I proceeded-with what caution-with what foresight-with what dissimulation I went to work!” (39). I feel like I am having a conversation with the narrator, and he is telling me exactly what he did and how he felt while killing the old man. The effect from writing from this perspective is that the reader gets the full experience of the protagonist, making the reader feel like he/her is having a conversation with the narrator. However, the reader is limited to the perspective and thoughts solely of the narrator, and does not get a broad view of others in the story. The first person creates a sense and experience of being the narrator, and the effect is that the reader sees exactly how the story happened from the narrator’s perspective and thoughts.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s