The Fall of the House of Usher Questions and Answers
by Edgar Allan Poe

The Fall of the House of Usher book cover
Start Your Free Trial

What is known as "Poe's Unity of Effect" signifies that each word used contributes to the work as a whole. Explain how the meaning of five words in "The Fall of the House of Usher" furthered your understanding of the text, its message, and/or its form.

In order to understand Poe's Unity of Effect, one needs to determine the message of Edgar Allan Poe's "The Fall of the House of Usher." Depending on the message, it would then be possible to find words that further the understanding of the work as a whole.

Expert Answers info

Cailey Thiessen eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2018

write108 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Arts

"The Fall of the House of Usher" is a short story by Edgar Allan Poe. It tells of a man who travels to visit his friend Roderick Usher, who requested the visit because of his illness.

The illness is unexplained, but Usher is depressed, afraid, and melancholy. This is due in part to his dying sister. Soon after the narrator arrives, Roderick's sister dies, and the two men carry her into a vault in the house.

However, it appears she is not actually dead, and a few days later she manages to escape the vault. She climbs the stairs and finds her brother just as she dies for real. Roderick dies of fear, and the narrator flees the scene.

In order to answer your question, we need to look at Poe's Unity of Effect. In short, Unity of Effect means that each word has a purpose in the story. Poe believed that...

(The entire section contains 437 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial