What are the similarities between "The Tell-Tale Heart" and "The Lady, or the Tiger?"

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Some similarities between "The Tell-Tale Heart" and "The Lady, or the Tiger?" include an ominous mood, a tension-filled ending, and the use of madness to generate conflict.

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Three similarities that exist between "The Tell-Tale Heart" and "The Lady, or the Tiger?" are a shared ominous mood, an increasingly tense conclusion, and characters who are drawn into madness.

In Poe's story, the narrator's voice is suspect from the beginning. His insistence that he had to kill the old man because of his eye is alarming, and readers are drawn into his patient yet murderous plot. The ominous mood doesn't end with the murder; the narrator must entertain the police after he kills the old man, trying to convince himself that all is well. Meanwhile, he becomes convinced that he can hear the beating of the (dead) man's heart. "The Lady, or the Tiger?" opens with a more neutral mood, yet the king's decision to cast the young man into the tiger cages creates a sharp shift in mood. As the princess considers her options, the mood is heavy, as readers are unsure whether she will allow her love or her jealousy to sentence her lover.

The conclusions of both stories are filled with tension. At the end of "The Tell-Tale Heart," the narrator grows increasingly frantic over the sound which he presumes to be the beating of the old man's heart. Finally, he can take it no longer and confesses his crimes to the police. The princess in "The Lady, or the Tiger?" carefully weighs her decision, recalling how the beautiful lady hidden behind one of the doors has often looked with admiration upon the princess's lover. She has thought of nothing else except her decision, indicating that the choice to spare her lover's life is not an easy one. In the end, readers are not sure what the princess's final choice is, which provides no relief to the tension or conflict.

Finally, both stories use madness to create conflict in the stories. Clearly, the decision to kill a person because of the appearance of an eye doesn't reflect a rationally-thinking man. Even more, the narrator insists that he loved the old man. These thoughts reflect his troubled mind, which seemingly breaks completely at the end of the story. The king in "The Lady, or the Tiger?" uses human torture and a horrific game of chance to mete out justice. He seeks out the most vicious tigers in the kingdom and then enjoys the possibility of watching them attack presumed criminals, taking "great delight" in the process. He encourages people to gather in the arena for an event that might be a "bloody slaughter" or a "hilarious wedding," and the outcome makes no difference—both entertain the king. This reflects a particular madness, as justice is not dependent on guilt or innocence but rather on a stroke of chance.

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What are some similarities between the stories "A Good Man Is Hard To Find" and "The Tell Tale Heart"?

The most marked similarity between these two stories is the use of the grotesque. Both Flannery O'Connor and Edgar Allen Poe use the elements of the grotesque extensively in all their work. Grotesque characters are those that garner both empathy and disgust from the reader. Horror is blended with beauty in both stories. Both stories have characters that are evil in action, but who appeal to the reader on a human level. While we despise them, we understand them as well.

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