What personal trait enables the protagonist in Edgar Allan Poe's "The Black Cat" to live?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

An interesting question. Does it have to be a single trait? If so, then it is monomania, as is the case for so many of Poe's characters. He has a single fixation (that cat!) which overwhelms all other aspects of his life. If we're allowed to consider more, I'd say...

See
This Answer Now

Start your subscription to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your Subscription

An interesting question. Does it have to be a single trait? If so, then it is monomania, as is the case for so many of Poe's characters. He has a single fixation (that cat!) which overwhelms all other aspects of his life.
If we're allowed to consider more, I'd say alcoholism, self-deception, and near madness. He drinks himself half blind, and manages to blame the cat for an anger that drove an ax into his wife's skull and killed her! He can then live with himself, and I'd say he can do so due to all of these traits combined.
Greg

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team