What types of conflict are involved in Edgar Allan Poe's short story, "The Tell-Tale Heart"?  

2 Answers

mizzwillie's profile pic

mizzwillie | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

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In the short story, "The Tell-Tale Heart", more than one type of conflict is visible.  The conflict between the narrator and the old man illustrates the person vs person type of conflict. The narrator is determined to kill the old man because of his eye. It is also illustrated in a way between the narrator and the reader when the narrator asks, "but why will you say that I am mad?"  Person vs self is best seen in the torment the narrator goes through when the police arrive as to whether anyone else can hear the beating of the heart. He debates with himself about what to do, finally giving in and confessing.  Person vs society is illustrated between the narrator and the officers of the law because the narrator knows that he will be arrested if the heart is found.  Each of these conflicts is clearly found in the story.

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fireman123 | Student, Grade 9 | (Level 1) eNoter

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The types of conflict that are present in Edgar Allan Poe's short story, "The Tell-Tale Heart" are person vs. self and person vs. person. The protagonist, a care taker of an old man is annoyed and dsitrubed by the eye of the old man. He claims that the eye is possessed by evil, calling it the "Evil Eye". He leads out a plan to go and kill the man. The person vs. self, is the protagonist vs. himself. His own conscious is the sound of the heartbeat. He is hearing the guiltiness.