Short story comparison essay

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Comparative Literary Essay “The Black Cat” and “The Imp of the Perverse” Perverseness is one man’s change in behaviour. It is a characteristic term to describe when one is willfully deviating from acceptable or conventional behaviour. “The Black Cat” and “The imp of the Perverse” written by the well known poet Edgar Allan Poe, have a common theme and display numerous similarities. In the “Black Cat”, alcohol leads the narrator to become violent towards his wife and pets. “The Imp of the Perverse” is in fact a confession. An inmate (the narrator), describes the impulse that possessed him to lose control. In order to adequately analyze the stories, it is essential to compare the themes, settings, symbols, moods, conflicts, archetypal patterns, character developments, plot structure, and style of author in both short stories. The setting, the character development, and the plot structure are quite often closely related to each other. The setting has a relevance to the plot and the character development. Edgar Allan Poe writes in the first person. In both stories, the narrator is the main character. He is obviously deranged and his sanity is questionable. “The Black Cat” begins with the narrator claiming that he has not lost his senses. “…the story for which I am about to pen. I neither expect nor solicit belief. Mad indeed would I be to expect it… yet, mad am I not”. Although the narrator states that he is not mad, it is evident that he is unreliable and has a demented point of view. This is the same case for the character illustrated in “The Imp of the Perverse”. The narrator’s state of mind is clearly disturbed although he appears to be intelligent and well educated. Both characters are facing the same situation. The stories are told by an inmate in his prison cell on death row. They claim that a perverse impulse is the reason for why they are condemned to death.

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