The Tell-Tale Heart Topics for Discussion

This Study Guide consists of approximately 46 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Tell-Tale Heart.
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1. The narrator insists from the very beginning of the story that he is not insane. What characteristics does he say prove his sanity? What characteristics suggest his madness instead?

2. Look carefully at the narrator's discussion of his motivation for the crime. Why does he assure the reader that he loves the old man and has no reasonable cause to kill him?

3. Notice how cautiously the narrator sets up the murder of the old man? How does he do this? Why does he take so long before killing him?

4. Notice all those places in the story when the narrator identifies with the old man. Discuss the nature of this identification.

5. Discuss all the references to time in the story—watches, clocks, time passing, etc. Why is the narrator so concerned with time?

6. Notice the narrator's insistence that what is mistaken for madness is actually...

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This section contains 221 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy The Tell-Tale Heart Study Guide
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The Tell-Tale Heart from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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