The Black Cat by Edgar Allan Poe

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 12th grade February 2008

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"The Black Cat" by Edgar Allan Poe is about a kindhearted man who loves animals. However, the man's obsession for cats mixed with his alcohol addiction causes him to go crazy. Eventually, his madness leads him to murder his wife, whose death he tries to cover up. Edgar Allan Poe uses elements of fiction very well to make his story exciting and thrilling to his readers. Most importantly, the use of inciting force and crisis is very apparent in Poe's story. These parts of the plot are used in the introduction scene and in the final scene of his story.

The initial conflict that gets the reader interested and gets the story started is called an inciting force. In Poe's story, the inciting force occurs in the beginning scene. "For the most wild yet most homely narrative which I am about to pen, I neither expect nor solicit belief."

The narrator begins by saying that he is about to tell a story that the reader will not believe; nor does he expect the reader to believe it. The first sentence of the story is what stirs the initial conflict and gets the reader interested in what is going to happen. The reader becomes curious to know what the narrator could have done that is so serious. The narrator goes on to say, "Mad indeed would I be to expect it, in a case where my very senses reject their own evidence." Here the narrator is saying that he himself can't believe what he is about to tell. This opening of the story pulls a reader in and gets the reader interested and craving to read more to find out what the story is about. "But [If] tomorrow I die" tells the reader that the narrator must have committed...