Guilt and Innocence
The guilt of the narrator is a major theme in ‘‘The Tell-Tale Heart.’’ The story is about a mad person who, after killing a companion for no apparent reason, hears an interminable heartbeat and releases his overwhelming sense of guilt by shouting his confession to the police. Indeed, some early critics saw the story as a straightforward parable about self-betrayal by the criminal’s conscience.
The narrator never pretends to be innocent, fully admitting that he has killed the old man because of the victim’s pale blue,...
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