The Man Who Was Poe Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. What is the significance of the absence of adults in the Prologue?

The absence of adults in the Prologue means that Edmund is forced to make two important decisions on his own that impact the entire story. The first is to leave the room to buy food, and the second is to help the old man, which delays his return to his sister at home.

2. How does the setting reflect Edmund's emotional state?

The setting reflects Edmund's emotional state in that it is bleak. His room is in a drafty tenement in a dangerous neighborhood, which represents Edmund's fears and uncertainty.

3. Do you think Edmund should have stopped to help the old man before returning home?

Edmund's decision to help the old man reflects his upbringing, revealing the positive nature of the absent mother and aunt. Edmund is concerned about the fact that his sister is alone, but has no reason to believe that any harm comes to her because the door is locked from the outside.

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