Poe's Short Stories

Mood Comparison of Edgar Allan Poe's "The Tell Tale Heart" and Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" College

The literary element of mood portrays the atmosphere of the work through its words and descriptions in order to create an emotional response within the reader. This allows the reader to develop an emotional attachment and interest in the story, as well as to better understand the characters’ feelings or emotional situations and the work as a whole. Mood is one of the major literary elements which brings life and emotion to a story. There are several ways to portray the mood throughout the literary work - including the setting, tone, diction, and theme of the story. Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Tell Tale Heart” and Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper” both use mood effectively.

One of the earliest ways for mood to be created in a story is through the setting. The setting can provide a background of the character or the events which take place. Since the reader will typically learn the setting early on, it provides one of the first key introductions to the story and overall mood. “The Yellow Wallpaper” starts out with a brief introduction to the setting; and later on in the story, the narrator describes their temporary home in greater detail. Through Gilman’s description of the upstairs bedroom and the wallpaper, the...

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