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The Plague and the Pit - Essay Example

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Author : harrisonhessel
Pages 5 (1255 words)


Your Name: Due Date: The Plague and the Pit Edgar Allan Poe was born in 1809 and died in 1849. In this short span of 40 years he was renowned for his skills as a poet and for developing the potential power of the short story…

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The Plague and the Pit

He has a profound way of presenting a story that pulls you in, both in his gift of language and in his understanding of what is frightening to people, all people on some level. “The life and career of Edgar Allan Poe can be a hall-of-mirrors like experience. There are many Poes” (Frank 1). Attempting to compare and contrast his works is no less of an experience. This is true of his short stories “The Masque of the Red Death” and “The Pit and the Pendulum.” Although they share certain elements, they both remain unique examples unto themselves. “The Masque of the Red Death” is set in the midst of a horrific plague that has decimated the population of Prince Prospero’s land. Instead of aiding the victims dying outside, he decides to throw an extravagant masked gala for him and his wealthy, noble friends. They lock themselves inside and block out the horror outside and revel in decadence and frivolous disregard. Prospero believes in his actions that this will keep him safe. When Death makes himself known, Prospero is offended at the affront. The Prince and all of his guests died that night (Poe 319-323). This story reminds us brilliantly of the certainty of death and the futility of attempting to escape it. In this Poe fulfilled his traditional writing style of being both “…direct and straightforward” ("The Pit and the Pendulum"). ...
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