The Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allan Poe

The Fall of the House of Usher book cover
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How do family dynamics impact this story?

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The Usher family story is one of the best unwritten plot lines Poe has ever devised. The subtle mention he makes in the opening descriptive passages allude to a family built upon corruption and incest. The narrator makes the supposition that the family's "direct line of descent" is the cause for his friend Roderick's troubling mental condition.
As readers, we must wonder at what came before - what were Roderick and Madeleine as children? What were their parents like? A prequel in the making!

In a more tangible way, Poe uses the family dynamics as a source of foreshadowing and conflict. The narrator has come to see Roderick because he is "unsettled". Roderick's internal conflict is...

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