Presentation on theme: "III.5.Edgar Allan Poe Focus of Study Life Experience Literary Career Poetic Theory Poetic Style View Point Towards short story Significance."— Presentation transcript:
III.5.Edgar Allan Poe Focus of Study Life Experience Literary Career Poetic Theory Poetic Style View Point Towards short story Significance
Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849) Established a new symbolic poetry. Formulated the new short story in the detective and science fiction line. Developed an important artistic theory. Laid foundation for psychoanalytic criticism.
Life Experience 1809, born in Boston, a touring actors’ family. 1812, adopted by John Allan, a merchant in Richmond, Va. 1826, entered the University of Virginia. 1830, appointed to the U.S. Military Academy in West Point. 1836, married his cousin Virginia.
Literary Career 1833 ， won a prize for the short story "MS Found in a Bottle," thus began his editor career. 1829, “Sonnet—To Science” 1831, “To Helen” 1839, Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque, includes "The Fall of the House of Usher." 1845, "The Raven" 1849, died in Baltimore, calling out “Lord help my poor soul”.
Poetic Theory 1. Poem be short, readable at one sitting. 2. Poetry, first of all, was an independent realm that had nothing to do with the real. It was an “Ideal” world of “supreme beauty”. 3. Poe attacked the popular view that poetry was moral or didactic and called for “pure” poetry. 4. True poetry is “the rhythmical creation of beauty”, and “music is the perfection of the soul, or idea, of poetry”.
Poetic Style & Themes 1. A master of using meter. Capable of creating moods by using internal and external rhyme, regular rhythm, or by imitating certain suggestive sounds to achieve a special rhetorical and aural effect.
2. Poe’s poems were largely manifold mental journey, often transitory, vague and confused in their imagery, dealing with his feeling about a comparatively narrow scope of ideas such as death, love, the past, despair and loss of sanity.
Viewpoint upon Short Story Brevity so as to ensure the totality of impression. The very first sentence ought to help to bring out the single effect of the story. Compression: every word should contribute to the “pre-established” design of the work. A tale should reveal some logical truth with “the fullest satisfaction”. The ending should leave a sense of finality with the reader.
Significance Poe’s influence is world-wide in modern literature. His aesthetics and conscious craftsmanship, his attack on “the heresy of the didactic” and his call for “the rhythmical creation of beauty” have influenced French symbolists and the devotees of “art for art’s sake.” Poe was father of psychoanalytic criticism and the detective story.
Study Questions How does Allan Poe’s early life influence his later writings? How does he embody his poetic theory in his poems? Please cite one or two examples. What kind of effect does Poe want to create in his short story "The Fall of the House of Usher" ?
Reference Bittner, William, Poe: A Biography (1962) Buranelli, Vincent: Edgar Allan Poe (1962) Davidson, Edward H., Poe: A Critical Study (1957) Levin, Harry: The Power of Blackness: Hawthorne, Poe, Melville (1958) Miller, John C.: Building Poe Biography (1977) Poe, Edgar Allan: Letters, ed. by John Ward Ostrom, 2 vols., 2d ed. (1966) Regan, Robert, ed.: Poe: A Collection of Critical Essays (1967) Symons, Julian: The Tell-Tale Heart: The Life and Works of Edgar Allan Poe (1978) Wagenknecht, Edward: Edgar Allan Poe: The Man behind the Legend (1963)
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