The Black Cat Questions and Answers
by Edgar Allan Poe

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Give a critical analysis for the short story "The Black Cat" by Edgar Allan Poe.

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Written by Edgar Allan Poe, "The Black Cat" is a story of horror, in the Poe tradition of other other horror stories like "The Tell-tale Heart" and "The Cask of Amontillado." There are supernatural elements; ane these stories have a narrator who is suspect because of his fragile grasp of reality—the sanity of the narrator is in question. We can no longer be sure of the narrator's reliability.

In "The Black Cat," our main character is recounting a string of events that have led him to his fate. We find that what he considers a "series of mere household events" are anything but—eventually cementing the reader's sense of the narrator is mentally unstable. While he wants the reader to sympathize with him, it is impossible because his psyche is so fragmented. Like the narrator in "The Cask of Amontillado," this man wants the reader to understand his actions, which is an impossible task when dealing with madness: he does not deal with logic or reason.

Thinking himself "excitable," the narrator...

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