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The cask of amontillado - Essay Example

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When Edgar Allan Poe wrote “The Cask of Amontillado”, he did not realize that he was leaving the readers with a puzzling characterization that could have very well heralded the beginning of the era of psychology. His complex characterizations in the story that could very…
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A Psychological Analysis of a Character From The Cask of Amontillado When Edgar Allan Poe wrote “The Cask of Amontillado”, he did not realize that he was leaving the readers with a puzzling characterization that could have very well heralded the beginning of the era of psychology. His complex characterizations in the story that could very well have been case studies in abnormal psychology made the story a highly interesting and educational reading material for those interested in discovering how the human mind works. His depiction of the method by which the human mind process jealousy and pride into an act of revenge and murder becomes so compelling that the reason behind the actions of Montresor need not be explained in full detail.

Jealousy and pride are two of the most basic human traits that it oftentimes drives a person to murder as an act of revenge upon the person whom one feels has bested him, as in the case of Montresor and the unfortunately named Fortunato. As indicated in the opening statement of the story “The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge.” (Poe 743). Within the context of the story, we can see that Montresor feels that Fortunato has made a fool of him many times and has thus, hurt his pride often. Reaching his tipping point, he then vows to exact revenge upon Fortunato, though he is unsure of whether his desire to kill the other is based upon jealousy or revenge.
Montresor proves to be a master of mind games as he successfully uses reverse psychology in order to continue to entice Fortunato towards the deep catacombs where his death awaited him. He appealed to the vanity and pride of Fortunato in order to ensure the success of his plans. This leads the reader to conclude that Montresor has a perverse mind that simply wanted to do Fortunato fatal harm even though he had not done anything within the storyline to deserve such a fate.
Yet towards the end, we see that Montresor still has some control over his mental faculties as he senses guilt and remorse over what he has done to Fortunato. A man whom he knows truly has not done anything wrong to him except to be better than him in certain ways. Thus we see a man, psychologically conflicted and unable to deal with the results of his actions in his life. Read More
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