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Psychosomatic Disorders and Traumatic Experiences in Edgar Allan Poes Real Life and their Influences on his Writings - Research Paper Example

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Name: Course: Tutor: Date: Psychosomatic Disorders and Traumatic Experiences in Poe’s Real Life and their Influences on his Writings Psychosomatic disorders and angst in Allan Poe’s works are so dominant that they have always provoked readers to question whether Poe’s works are influenced by his real life experiences…
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Psychosomatic Disorders and Traumatic Experiences in Edgar Allan Poes Real Life and their Influences on his Writings
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Download file to see previous pages Referring to the influence of Poe’s real life experience on his writings, Marie Bonaparte says, “Most critics of Poe’s work analyze it in direct relation to his life experiences in only the most subtle way. Much of his poetry and some of his prose reflect his obsession with the death of a lover” (Bonaparte 623). Poe’s yearnings for his nearest ones’ affection and love –which he lost in his childhood-, were further aggravated by the bitterness of his relationship with his step-father. In fact, the stepfather soon turns Poe’s inferiority-complex, which evolves from the loss of the nearest people, into Oedipal Complex. Beside these traumatic events in his life, Allan Poe has been haunted by nightmares throughout his whole life. Instead of being terrified he soon learnt to manipulate the nightmarish experiences in his writings, as in his book, Edgar Allan Poe, Vincent Buranelli says: He took to inspecting with meticulous exactitude his psychological states when he hovered between sleep and wakefulness, found his mind occupied with shadows of ideas “rather Psychical than intellectual,” and learned to some degree to control them. (26) In a letter to Mr. Allan (April, 1833) Poe acknowledges the presence of a loveless, desolate and austere world in his life. In this world he was suffering from isolation and destitution: “Without friends, without any means, consequently, of obtaining employment, I am perishing — absolutely perishing for want of aid… For God’s sake, pity me and save me from destruction” (O’Neill 7). Noticeably his yearnings for the companionship and compassion of his near people, deteriorated by his stepfather-invoked Oedipal-angst, to a great extent, assists Poe to perceive the revengefulness of a mind infected with inferiority complex. Such perception eventually helps him to conjure up the hideously revengeful character, Montressor, in the story, “the Cask of Amontillado”. Though the “Cask of Amontillado” overridingly reflects the theme of revenge, the evidences of psychological turmoil such as inferiority-complex and Oedipal angst, etc are taken from Poe’s real-life experiences that he himself has been familiar with during his lifetime. Indeed almost of Poe’s protagonists manifest these psychological complexes. Whereas “the Cask of Amontillado”, “The Premature Burial”, “the Black Cat”, “The Tell-tale Heart” etc display Poe’s real-life Oedipal angst and inferiority complex through the protagonists’ paroxysmal personality disorders like murderous intension and alcoholism, other stories like “Ligeia” and “The Raven” exhibit Poe’s longings for camaraderie of his loved ones. These stories reveal a great of the existential void that had been invoked by these losses. Indeed such longings are vividly evident in the necrophilic fantasies of the central characters in works such as “Ligeia” and “The Raven.” Indeed the same existential absurdity and void in Poe’s life has assisted him greatly to conjure up a world that is void of love. This world of Poe is haunted by the fear of death, revenge, and injustice. In this world people are affected with love-sickness, hyperesthesia, hypersensitivity to humiliation, hypochondria, abnormal revengefulness, etc. Such bleak ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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