Poe's Poetry

Acceptance and Subtle Autobiography in "The Raven" 12th Grade

As the account of his life goes, Edgar Allan Poe was a notoriously dark and depressed man who was always in search of love. When he finally found a marital relationship with his first cousin, she passed away, making his life even more tragic and empty. He often wrote about his despair over his lost love, and used it to inspire many great works. Some may consider Poe to have pioneered the horror genre. His most famous piece of work, The Raven, played an important role in giving birth to this new type of entertainment. The Raven is about a man, heartbroken over his recently deceased lover, who gets a visit from a mysterious raven. The poem documents the speaker’s feelings and curiosities about this raven who, quite shockingly, can speak. However, the Raven can only speak one word, which allows the speaker to drive himself mad. Through the use of symbolism and allusion in Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven, Poe illustrates that an inability to accept the past will inevitably lead to the self-destruction of one’s future.

Poe uses symbolism to show the consequences that come from the rejection or acceptance of finality. In the poem, the Raven is used to reflect the speaker’s denial of the past and to show the self-destruction that comes...

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