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The Tell-Tale Heart Questions

  • Date Submitted: 02/14/2013 02:59 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 62.8 
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The Tell-Tale Heart
Questions:
2. What is the narrator’s motivation for murder? Is it valid? Why or why not? Write your idea and share them with others.
A: Narrator’s motivation for murdering is the old man’s “vulture eye,” which creates fear and fury in the narrator’s inner heart. The motivation is certainly not valid as the vulture eye is simply an eye of an innocent old man, and the eye is physically harmless to the narrator. In the story, narrator also states that he “[loves] the old man” but he wants to “take the life of the old man.” In other words, the narrator has no hatred toward the old man, but he has desire to murder the old man. Therefore, narrator’s motivation is arbitrary and irrational as he is truly insane and wants to kill the old man, and thus the old man’s “eye of a vulture” that bothers the narrator is the reason for murdering. Moreover, it is morally wrong to judge people from appearance such as eyes. Hence the “pale blue eye with a film over it” is not a valid motivation for murdering.

3. What is the narrator’s nervous disease? Have you ever known or heard about someone developing a nervous reaction after doing something he/she felt guilty about? What kind of nervous disorder did the person develop? What happened?
A: Narrator is mentally ill as he feels “very dreadfully nervous” and even has desire to kill people. Paranoia is his disease, and this is evident in his belief that the old man’s eye is threatening him. A few years ago, there was news about a killer confessing his deeds because he could hear and dream of victims calling and disturbing him every night. He was driven crazy and could not stand the voices anymore, so he told the truth. Nervous disorder of the killer on the news were visual and auditory hallucination as his brain created fake sounds and images. Corpses cannot call someone’s name as they are lifeless.

4. What are some of the conflicts in the story? What effect does telling the story from the narrator’s point of...

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