TTP | Nevermore!

Edgar Allan Poe  -

October 28th, 2011

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Praised as much as maligned and misunderstood as much as analyzed, no writer may have done more for American literature than Edgar Allan Poe

Sure he looked like Charlie Chaplin after a sketched out meth jag and buffed out his own his 13-year-old cousin, but he also was also a master of the short story and the progenitor of detective fiction.  

Orphaned, discounted and disowned, Poe was proof that some of the most fascinating art comes from the most damaged souls.

[Join the conversation about ... Edgar Allen Poe.]

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Numbers

$9

Amount of money The American Review paid Poe to publish his poem, “The Raven,” in their February 1845 issue. The poem went on to gain wide acclaim and to be reprinted thousands of times in other periodicals and texts.

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Quote

I became insane with long periods of horrible sanity.

Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849)

Words
cryptography
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noun.     the art of writing and solving codes.

Poe enjoyed the challenge, science and mystery of cryptography. He issued a challenge in Alexander’s Weekly Messenger that he could solve any cipher submitted by its readers.

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Fact

Poe attended the University of Virginia with barely a dollar to his name. He gambled, hoping to win extra money to stay in school, and ended up instead burning his furniture to keep him warm after the first term. He dropped out shortly thereafter.

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The List

Prime Poe

The Tell-Tale Heart (1843) After dismembering and hiding his murder victim’s body beneath the floorboards of his room, the narrator goes mad insisting he can hear the man’s heart still beating.
Annabel Lee (1849) Angels, jealous of Poe and a childhood sweetheart’s love, kill her. The narrator lies down and reminisces at her grave by the sea.
The Purloined Letter (1844) A detective story about an incriminating letter hidden in plain sight. A mental playground for French psychoanalyst and philosopher Lacan and Derrida.
The Cask of Amontillado (1846) A nobleman entombs his drunken friend alive in the catacombs after being insulted. Fifty years later he still has not been caught and hopes his friend is resting in peace.
A Dream Within A Dream (1849) In this brief poem the narrator ascertains that his inability to control certain aspects of his life must mean that he is living in a dream within a dream.

Poe died at the age of 40 under mysterious circumstances in Baltimore, MD on October 7, 1849. He was found mumbling and dazed wearing someone else’s clothing.

In March of 2012, The Raven will be released. The film stars John Cusack as Edgar Allan Poe, and is a fictionalized account of the last days of the writer’s life.

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