Kaleb Clem Mrs. Winslow English II Honors 31 October 2012 “The Tell-Tale Hearts” – “The Black Cat” Comparison “The Tell-Tale Hearts” and “The Black Cat” are two stories that share more similarities than differences. The plots both start out the same with a main character whose actions throughout the story makes apparent to the reader his insanity and have to deal with the internal and external dilemmas that are caused by the evil deeds, which both happen to be involved with murder, due to the unstable state of the man’s conscience.
The two stories have settings that are both strikingly similar. Both stories have a gothic, mysteriously dark setting. And both stories are set within the narrator and the main character’s home; however, “The Black Cat” had more than one setting. In “The Black Cat” the main character’s house is burned down and so he is forced to get a new one. More details are given about this house than his earlier house or the home in “The Tell Tale Heart. ” We are told that the house is old, unlike the first one, and not what he and the wife are used to.
The story also tells about the cellar, being such an important setting the narrator tells us that the psychological confinement is increased and taping that gets into our deepest fears concerning home and life. The characters from “The Tell-Tale Heart” and “The Black Cat” we see that for the most part, the stories are unbelievably alike. Both stories feature a man who is undoubtedly considered insane by the end of the story and who is the main character and policemen investigate under suspicion of murder. The Tell-Tale Heart” also has a neighbor who plays a small role in the story and The Black Cat contains the man’s wife, Pluto, and the second cat. The plot is almost exactly the same in both stories. Both stories feature a man who claims to be sane in the beginning although he proves to be otherwise later. The insanity in both characters differs. In “The Tell-Tale Heart,” the man just seems to have a mental condition of sorts. In The Black Cat,” however, the main character is a raging alcoholic, which seems to be the main cause for his abnormal and malevolent behavior, like when he cut out Pluto’s eye. Pluto never did anything wrong, but the man was intoxicated. “The Tell-Tale Heart” and “The Black Cat” were very similar. They had almost the same plot. The settings in the stories were much in common, and both plots featured gothic elements with large houses and lack of character variety.