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Word Count: 455
Using first person point of view is significant in that it allows the reader to engage in the thoughts of the narrator and thus make a conclusion about his or her character In Poes The Tell-Tale Heart the reader can conclude based on the thoughts and remarks of the narrator that he is deranged and suffers from symptoms similar to those of paranoid schizophrenia The narrator reveals his anxiety toward the reader and other characters several times throughout the story For instance he begins the story inquiring How then am I mad and states observe how healthily--how calmly I can tell you the whole story Paragraph 1 The narrator attempts to prove his sanity when the reader has not yet had the opportunity to make any kind of judgement In addition the narrator claims to be so distraught with the old mans evil eye that he has decided to commit murder Paragraph 2 Perhaps the narrator suspected that the mans eye could see the narrator as he really was - a mad man Other signs of paranoia are present when the narrator states that the policemen were mocking his horror when in actuality they knew nothing of the crime Paragraph 17 The narrator experiences auditory hallucinations another symptom of schizophrenia when he claims to hear the old mans beating heart For instance he states the beating grew louder louderthe sound would be heard by a neighbor Paragraph 11 It is physically impossible for a heartbeat to be heard at such lengthy distances However it is possible for the narrator to mistake this sound with the beating of his own heart Finally the narrator suffers from extreme mood changes again similar to that of a schizophrenic This change in mood is reflected in the narrators speech pattern As the story opens the narrator states that he will present himself in a tranquil manner However as the story progress his sentences become fragmented and repetitious For
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