Edgar Allan Poe's poems are often considered "gateway" works. What do you think accounts for this introductory value? Poe’s poems are often considered “Gateway” works: readers come to understand poetry, perhaps to like and appreciate it, after having been introduced to it by Poe’s works. What do you think accounts for this introductory value (even if you think the idea dubious)? Use direct references to two or more of Poe’s poems to support your answer. You may also find it helpful to consider the excerpt from his “Poetic Principle,” Poe is credited with having invented detective fiction. Using “The PurloinedLetter” as a source of evidence, solve this mystery: why has detective fiction, in print or on large screen and small, proven so enduringly popular?

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If you use the term "gateway" in its defined sense--as a "structure framing an opening"--then I would agree that many of Poe's poems fit this description. Surely, his poems, particularly "Annabel Lee," "The Raven," and "The Bells," are among the most popular in American literature, and those poems have been taught for decades in public school English classes. They are among the most popularly recited and discussed in school classrooms and beautifully illustrate various forms of poetic structure, including rhyme schemes, meter, rhythm, alliteration and assonance, and tone, among others. All three create a specific mood, and Poe unveils the stories in a relatively straightforward manner--additional reasons for their initial interest to many students as well as to the enduring popularity of his work.

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